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West Hartford Student Wins Poetry Contest

Will Knox of West Hartford. Submitted photo

Will Knox of West Hartford, a student at Watkinson School, won a gold medal for reciting poetry in Chinese.

Submitted by Stacy Routhier, Watkinson School

Will Knox of West Hartford. Submitted photo

Will Knox of West Hartford. Submitted photo

Watkinson student, Will Knox ’19 of West Hartford won a gold medal after taking first place in his category at the 2015 CT COLT Poetry Recitation Contest held on Tuesday, March 17, at Lyman Hall High School in Wallingford.

The Connecticut Council of Language Teachers (COLT) holds this competition each year. Students take to the stage to recite poetry in a variety of world languages — from Spanish to Latin to French, or in Knox’s case, Chinese.

The ninth grader has been learning Chinese for the past seven years, beginning with “Bopomofo,” the traditional Chinese alphabet.

“We were going to adopt a Chinese baby so my mom brought my brother and me to a Chinese language school,” Knox explained, “When my teacher suggested my brother and I do a competition, we got interested.”

Knox says he owes everything to his teacher, Pei-Pei Champion, the founder, CEO and principal teacher of Champion Chinese Language Institute that he attends in West Hartford.

“She is kind and loving to all of her students,” Knox said, “She tries to help every student if they have a hard time learning.”

His teacher’s efforts are very clear. According to Knox, he got third place in his first competition but has gotten first place ever since.

“I really feel like I’ve accomplished something,” Knox said.

Watkinson School is Hartford’s oldest independent day school serving students in grades 6-12/PG.  Their next open house is April 15, from 9-11 a.m.

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