Posts Tagged ‘quiz’

New Year’s Eve Quiz

The pinnacle of our New Year’s celebrations wasn’t the fireworks, Auld Lang Syne or Big Ben’s bongs. It was a quiz in five rounds.

The day’s build-up to the quiz included a game of squash for Gabe and me; a City match on TV; a trip to see Wonder at the cinema; and a dinner of pizza and curry.

We began quizzing mid-evening. Each of us had researched (or made up) questions on a different topic. The competition was keen, with only Robin’s interest wavering towards the end.

Round 1, posed by L, was on geography. Two rivers that run through Aberdeen? Standing in Paris, are you nearer Edinburgh or Rome? Which former state of the Soviet Union is last in the alphabet, etc.

Round 2, with Robin as quiz-master, concerned sport. Where was Bob Beamon’s long-jump record broken? How many countries were represented in gymnastics at the Rio Olympics.

Round 3, facilitated by Eliza, probed knowledge of popular culture. Marilyn Monroe’s real name? Which TV programme from the 1980s featuring a small rodent has been brought back in 2017?

Round 4, saw Gabe test our musical knowledge, with five second excerpts of songs for us to identify. The music ranged from Bill Haley to Ed Sheeran and Robert Wagner.

Round 5 was my cryptic family quiz and included: Who kept seeing violet [Violett]? Who came back to meet [meat] old acquaintances? Who went without insects in the ear for a month? Who gave up the chair for someone who wasn’t elderly, infirm or pregnant? (Answers: Robin, Eliza, Gabe, L)

We also talked about ambitions or resolutions for the New Year. Robin wants ‘to persistently get 4’s in English’ – his preferred school subject and equivalent to a grade C at GCSE while still in his first year of secondary school. Gabe wants to improve how he plays¬†Chopin’s ‘Raindrop Prelude’ and progress to piano grade six. Eliza had already acknowledged wanting ‘to do more and spend less time on her phone in her room,’ as well as eat more fruit for breakfast.

We finished in time for midnight. Robin asked me to come upstairs with him as he didn’t like New Year’s celebrations, explaining that the countdown to New Year worried him that something bad would happen. With Gabe, we played some indoor cricket in Robin’s room, while Eliza and L watched Ed Sheeran on TV.

Saved until last


Eliza’s parents evening, attended by L, Eliza and me, was an evening of almost unremitting praise. The French teacher went into Gallic excess. More English, more restrained were history, English, music (although Eliza’s failure to go to strings group on Tuesday lunchtimes was mentioned) and science. Only maths, in the person of a very dull man, failed to join in the fun. But last was best, because the RE teacher, amongst her praise for Eliza, admitted that she always saved marking Eliza’s homework for last – to give her a boost at the end of a long marking session.


On a mild March evening, Robin joined L and I on a walk around the neighbourhood to get some air and steps on our health apps. A few minutes down the road and Robin announced that he was going to give us a quiz, on the subject of.. himself. For the next 20 minutes our knowledge of our younger son was tested: favourite music, tv programme, holiday and food preferences and much else. His mother, of course, won.


Gabe is nibbling away at the pile of GCSE assessments that fill year 11. Science practicals, music performances, French controlled assessment, cookery assessment and PE performances have all been ticked off, with the exams to come after Easter.  The most stressful for him was the food technology test. He had never completed a practical in the allotted time, but we persuaded him to practice at the weekend and prepare some of the ingredients at home. His savoury Chelsea bun with tomato sauce looked impressive. He prepared most thoroughly for the French assessment, drafting a sophisticated piece about his home town that he reproduced under controlled assessment conditions (dictionary + 40 words of notes). The interim results place him well to achieve an impressive set of GCSEs.