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Curious Minds - Student Profiles

Student Profiles


Isaac Bock is an eighth grader who loves to debate and argue; manages to keep up with all the new advances in technology; and draws inspiration from reading, and puts that inspiration to use in his own writing.

A student at Webster Stanley Middle School in Oshkosh, Isaac was a member of the Wild Minds: Exploring the Intellectual and Emotional Lives of Animals online class I taught for WCATY last winter. (See Curious Minds, April 8, 2014.) The class was a perfect fit for Isaac, who told me, “When it comes to science, I am a mad scientist in many ways. I love different chemistry experiments that have large reactions, and I also love conducting research, and organizing it. After our final project, I spent about two hours excessively organizing the data I collected, and putting it into different forms like graphs and tables.”

One of the most interesting things about Isaac his pet chickens. “Before my family got chickens, I didn’t think that I would like them at all,” he said. “However, this changed when I held them as baby chicks. They fell asleep in my hands, and were so cute! I also think that they are a unique pet, and it is a lot of fun getting fresh eggs from them.” 

Read more: Who is Isaac Bock?


It was a scene that could have come straight out of a movie: The young athlete’s team was down two points with 10 seconds left on the clock. He inbounded the ball to one of his teammates. The clock ticked down: 8, 7, 6 . . .

“Then I see the ball coming back toward me, and I leap up to grab it,” he recalls. "With only three seconds left, I turn around and shoot a fadeaway in between three players. The ball is soaring toward the hoop as the clock ticks on: 4, 3, 2 . . .

"It goes in with one second left! And it was the basket that put us into overtime.”

It’s a moment that stands out as one of the most memorable in the life of WCATY student Ben Scher.

Sports are a huge part of Ben’s life, playing on top teams for the Middleton Basketball Club and the Rush Wisconsin Soccer Club. “It's how I stay in good physical condition,” says Ben, a seventh grader at Kromrey Middle School in Cross Plains. “Just the thrill of playing the game keeps me going on, and I couldn't give that up.”

But sports aren’t the only challenge in Ben’s life. Born unable to hear, he faced a huge obstacle in learning to speak. “I had to work harder than most kids, and my parents had to work harder than most parents at teaching me how to hear,” says. “And I can now say it's paid off a lot.” 

Read more: WCATY Student Ben Scher Impresses on Court, in Class

Thanks to the word “oregano,” WCATY student Zoe Bockhorst, a seventh grader at Shorewood Intermediate School, is headed to the Badger State Spelling Bee March 23 in Madison.

“This year’s word was actually quite easy for me to spell,” said Zoe, in an article published online earlier this week by Shorewood Patch. She said she found the previous word she had been given, “beleaguer,” far more difficult. In all, Zoe had to spell 20 words correctly to win the CESA #1 regional spelling bee earlier this month. One of her competitors was Lydia Anshus, a fellow WCATY student who is also in grade 7 at SIS. The two actually spent some time drilling each other in preparation for the regional bee.


Read more: WCATY’s Zoe Bockhorst Advances to State Spelling Bee