Are you having an impact in the life of a future WCTE Academic Bowl Team Member?

Posted by Kate Spears on

Join WCTE’s Get Ready To Learn Host, Cindy Putman and WCTE’s Education Outreach Associate, Reggie Brown as they discuss this year’s Academic Bowl and the history of this education and community engagement event at WCTE.

This year’s Academic Bowl will take place on January 27 and 28 at Derryberry Auditorium on Tennessee Tech’s Campus. This event is open to the public and showcases local high school academic teams from across the Middle Tennessee area.

Reggie Brown praises Jim Gray and the partnership that WCTE has with Tennessee Tech University. Gray and his staff generously open the doors to these high school students for a taste of how it feels to spend a weekend on the TTU campus. It truly takes a village to host an Academic Bowl. Many TTU professors volunteer their time as judges and timekeepers for each round.  

Brian O’Connor, TTU professor, researches and creates the questions that are administered during this double elimination tournament. He is following in the footsteps of retired Putnam County Schools educator Hal Denton who assisted WCTE’s CEO Becky Magura when she started this yearly event over 25 years ago. Reggie Brown challenged Putman to a round of questions and they both discovered that having to answer a random question in ten seconds or less is quite challenging.

Brown also discussed the teamwork that is involved at WCTE between the Education Department and the Production Crew. Each round that occurs during this two day event will be broadcast at a future date on WCTE. Brown praised Dr. Fred Culp for his support of the Academic Bowl and the Spirit Award that is given in his honor to the team that exhibits the best sportsmanship and spirit during the tournament.

Dr. Culp recently passed away so this year’s award has a special meaning for Brown. Putman and Brown also discussed the importance of early childhood education and the brain development of our earliest learners.

Brown is celebrating the recent birth of her first grandson and she and his mom and dad are reading to him daily, engaging him in conversation and talking to him about the world around him. These simple skills help a child’s brain development and give them a jump start on school success.  

For more information about the Academic Bowl, check out the Academic Bowl page on

If you have a young child in your life who may grow up to be a member of an area high school’s Academic Team, check out PBS Parents for tips on child development and how you can help your little learner develop their brain power.


Tune in each Saturday morning at 9:30 for the WCTE Get Ready To Learn Radio Show, with host Cindy Putman on Zimmer Broadcasting's The HUB 107.7 FM and 1400 AM. 

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Ready To Learn

Ready To Learn

WCTE's Ready to Learn initiative addresses school readiness in the Upper Cumberland

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WCTE Academic Bowl

WCTE Academic Bowl

Taping January 31 & February 7 @ Derryberry hall on TTU's campus

WCTE's Stations of Imagination at Fall FunFest

WCTE's Stations of Imagination at Fall FunFest

Friday, September 11th from 5pm - 9pm Saturday, September 12th from 10am - 9pm on the Cookeville Square

PBS Parents

PBS Parents

The trusted online resource that's filled with information about your child’s development from birth through the early school years.

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PBS Learning Media

PBS LearningMedia™ is the go-to destination for instant access to over 100,000 digital resources for teachers!

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WCTE’s Educational Team can customize workshops or professional development trainings for your group or organization. For workshop information, or to inquire about scheduling a workshop, call 921-528-2222 x. 227 or email us.

Topics are listed below:

  • Using Media as a learning tool
  • Using PBS kids apps to extend learning
  • How to be your child’s first teacher
  • Sesame Street Workshops
  • How does poverty effect a child’s brain
  • Literacy and Math
  • Brain Development

Workshops can be conducted in English and Spanish.