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Noggin Hoggin' Challenge Starting on Monday November 16, 2015

Here are the past questions which were used in this Noggin Hoggin' Challenge, along with the answers we accepted and an explanation.


Bonus Question (Head Start Clue)

Pumpkin carvings of well-known people and characters are shown below. To solve this bonus headstart question, begin by entering the name of each character into the space provided.


The letters found in the circles make up the title of a song which has long been associated with Halloween.

The singer of this tune starred in a movie of the same name decades after the song was first released. Which character did he play?

Acceptable answers:
Dr. Frankenstein
Doctor Frankenstein
Victor Frankenstein
Dr. Victor Frankenstein
Dr Victor Frankenstein


The people and characters shown in the collage are:

  1. Minion
  2. Count Dracula
  3. Frankenstein
  4. Sulley
  5. ET
  6. Freddy Krueger
  7. Charlie Brown
  8. Maleficent
  9. Headless Horseman
  10. Medusa
  11. Johnny Depp

The circled letters spell "Monster Mash"; a song by "Bobby and the Crypt-Kickers" released in 1962. The song was co-written and performed by Bobby "Boris" Pickett, who also starred in "Monster Mash: The Movie" in 1995. The character he played was none other than Dr. Victor Frankenstein. Other acceptable answers include Dr. Frankenstein, or simply Frankenstein.


Question for Monday November 16, 2015:

Crack the fallen phrase puzzle below to reveal the clue you'll need to answer this question. If you need help to get started, there are plenty of resources online to help you learn the basics of solving a fallen phrase.

Your answer must be a two digit number followed by a five letter word to be correct.

Hint: The Noggin Hoggin' Challenge writers are multi-talented!


Acceptable answers:
30 cents


To solve this fallen phrase puzzle, you'll have to transfer the letters from the bottom to a blank directly above, and form words. Work vertically, and start with the letters that are most obvious, as shown below.

Keep transferring the letters, looking for leads as you go. For example, for the last word in the first line, the only possible word that could be made with the combination of letters available is "AT".

Eventually, the words reveal themselves to make the following clue:

As you may already know, the Noggin Hoggin' Challenge is produced by the staff at ExamBank.com; an online practice test resource. ExamBank has been helping Canadian students from Kindergarten to Grade 12 study, practice, and review for unit tests and finals for more than 20 years. Today, this service is available in 4 provinces: Alberta, Ontario, British Columbia, and Saskatchewan.

ExamBank's crew has a strong pulse on the school and student population and thought it would be fun to offer a completely free and fun challenge to Canadian students – while giving away awesome prizes too, of course. This is how the Noggin Hoggin' was born back in February of 2009 when the first round took place.

Although we spend about a week each round to write and test the 6 Noggin Hoggin' questions, the rest of our time is spent keeping the ExamBank.com websites relevant, adding to existing question banks, and spreading the word about this handy resource.

Collaborating with teachers who write the online practice questions is no small feat. It's important that all the content relates to the provincial curriculum, so that students can easily identify what they'd like to practice. With all grade levels and most core courses available, we now have more than 100,000 top-notch practice questions in our banks!

Because teachers write the questions, we do charge a small fee for the service which helps to pay them for their contribution. As you may have learned today, both school and family accounts are available, with the smallest package priced at only $15. This gives a family access to 50 different practice tests anywhere on the site! Broken down, this means one practice test (also known as a login) costs 30 cents, which is the correct answer for this particular question.

There's also a Trades and Apprenticeship ExamBank for those who are either enrolled in a Trade school, or challenging an Interprovincial exam.


Question for Tuesday November 17, 2015:
We have learned much from teachers, but this one says "No one ought ever do that again." Many would try, but few would be successful in their ventures. One 7 year old boy was unwittingly successful and picked up by a well established maid in the area. The boy's sister also fought off almost certain death on her 17th birthday with the help of two tourists to the area. The first tourist to grab onto her hand recalls that day as he celebrated his 100th birthday. Which month and year did he celebrate becoming a centenarian?

Acceptable answers:
June 2013
June, 2013


On July 9, 1960 Roger and Deanne Woodward went with a family friend, James Honeycutt, for a ride on a hot day on the upper Niagara River when their fishing boat capsized in the rapids. Seven year old Roger Woodward with only a bathing suit and a life jacket was swept over the Canadian portion of Niagara Falls. He is the first person known to survive the plummet clad only in a life vest. Lucky for him, the long running "Maid of the Mist" scenic tourist boat was at the bottom of the falls and rescued him out of the fast-moving waters.

At the same time, his sister who was celebrating her 17th birthday was frantically swimming towards Goat Island at Terrapin Point less than 20 feet from the edge of the falls. There, a tourist, John Hayes, leaned as far as he could out past the protective railing, giving her words of encouragement to swim as hard as she could towards the shore as he reached out. Deanne was able to grasp his thumb with a death grip while another tourist, John Quattrochi, grabbed onto her life jacket and pulled her out.

James Honeycutt drowned as he went over Horseshoe Falls. His body did not surface for three days, kept down by the force of the falling water.

John Hayes still reminisced about this fateful day in 1960 on his 100th birthday in June 2013.


Question for Wednesday November 18, 2015:

This prolific Canadian artist has been commemorated in a number of museums, one of which bears his own name. A few of his pieces also remain prominently displayed in public settings; one at a major airport, another in a renowned park that boasts millions of visitors each year.

Although born and raised only a short distance from his ancestral village, it wasn't until adulthood that this artist fully came to realize the rich history, tradition, and culture of his predecessors. This awakening resulted in a quest to create, to educate, to salvage, and to preserve. 

His many works, replete with symbolism, include jewellery, drawings, sculptures and carvings. A dominant theme is animals, and a few of his designs have been featured on Canadian banknotes.

In the 1980s, he was commissioned to fashion a vessel to be enjoyed by the millions of people who came to gather in celebration of transportation by land, air, and sea. He was likely unaware of it at the time, but this particular masterpiece would play a significant role in his final journey; a pilgrimage "home".

A short distance west of the island where his remains now lie, experts are cautiously optimistic about a discovery made about a year ago. If correct, their finding provides important historical clues about North American civilization. What ancient contraption do they believe they've found under the water?

Acceptable answers:
fishing weir
fish weir
fishing weirs
fish weirs
stone weir


Bill Reid (1920–1988) was a Canadian artist born in Victoria, British Columbia. His mother was of Haida descent, while his father came from the United States. His grandmother lived in the village of Tanu, on Tanu Island, in the southern part of the Haida Gwaii archipelago.

Haida Gwaii, previously referred to as the Queen Charlotte Islands, lies off the northern coast of B.C. near the province's border with Alaska.

The Haida are North American native people who settled over 8,000 years ago. The cedar forests, plentiful wildlife, and proximity to the sea helped the Haida to survive and thrive for many centuries. However, a smallpox epidemic in 1862 decimated their people, when as many as 9 in 10 perished as a result of the disease. Their population has since rebounded.

Bill Reid was raised in western culture, and was largely unaware of his mother's Haida lineage throughout his early years. As a young adult he pursued a career in radio and broadcasting, eventually landing a job that spanned more than a decade with the CBC.

Curiosity about his aboriginal heritage, and a keen interest in art (more specifically, goldsmithing) eventually led Reid back to Haida Gwaii to better understand and appreciate the culture and his background. Two things happened next: his passion for all things Haida flourished, and he began to participate in expeditions to salvage relics from southern Haida Gwaii.

Jewellery and goldsmithing remained his primary artistic focus until he reached his 50s. At that time, he moved from Toronto back to Vancouver for good, where we would develop his craftsmanship to include many different types of materials, from the tiniest of works to massive creations.

Some of Reid's most famous pieces include the bronze Killer Whale sculpture at the Vancouver Aquarium in Stanley Park, and the Jade Canoe statue at Vancouver International Airport. There are far too many pieces to list here, but many more of his well-known works (such as "The Raven and the First Men" and numerous totem poles) are on display at the Museum of Anthropology at the University of B.C., as well as at the Bill Reid Museum in Vancouver.

Four of his creations went on to be featured on the Canadian $20 bill known as the "Canadian Journey" series, issued between 2004 and 2012.

To solve this question, though, it would have been necessary to discover that Reid was commissioned to carve a 15 metre war canoe from a single cedar log for Expo '86. He named it the "Lootaas" (also known as the Wave Eater).

The summer after his death in 1988, family and friends embarked on a two-day paddle in the Lootaas to bring Reid's ashes from Skidegate to Tanu Island in Haida Gwaii, the site of his mother's village. Here his ashes were partly scattered and interred as he'd once requested.

The body of water to the west of Tanu is Hectate Strait, as shown in the map below.

In this region, more than 100 meters below the water's surface, a team of archaeologists has been searching for signs of human civilization for decades. About a year ago, with the help of a robotic submergible device named "Bluefin", their search paid off when they discovered what appears to be a fishing weir (a strategically built stone corral to capture fish).

Scientists estimate the location would have been at sea level, and likely populated by Haida people, 14,000 years ago. This knowledge dates the fishing weir at approximately 13,800 years old.

The sonar images captured on the bottom of the sea floor support both professional theories and tribal oral histories, making it quite likely that the findings are accurate. Furthermore, rectangles trenched deep into the sea floor appear to be the sites of ancient Haida camps of approximately the same age.

If what these experts discovered is in fact an ancient fish weir, it would be the oldest evidence of human habitation in Canada, and the oldest fishing weir in the world.


Question for Thursday November 19, 2015:

Did you feel the earthquake yesterday (November 18, 2015)? No? It registered as a magnitude 7.0. Endeavour, Clayoquot Slope, and Cascade Basin seismometers recorded the waveforms of the earthquake even though it was thousands of kilometres from Canada.

One hundred and seven years ago the place this earthquake occurred was visited and written about by a world famous American author.

This author also spent some time in our Canadian landscape collecting ideas for a novel that would become a great success and continue to be popular to this day. Unfortunately, this author would pick up more than he bargained for on his Canadian trip, resulting in something that was detrimental to his health.

He lost something as a result of this illness. How many were lost?

Acceptable answers:
4 teeth
four teeth
4 front teeth
four front teeth


Online, there are many resources that will provide you with up to the minute information about earthquakes measured around the world. One of the neat places to see this information is at oceannetworks.ca. They operate a number of world-leading cabled ocean observatories that include 3 ocean floor seismometers to detect earthquakes and other seismic events. The earthquake that measured 7.0 on November 18th occurred at the Solomon Islands in the South Pacific. It is visible on their interactive earthquake data dashboard along with all the other earthquakes over a magnitude 4.0 that have occurred on the planet in the past year.

In 1908, Jack London cruised the pacific in his boat, the Snark, and visited the Solomon Islands. He chronicled many of his sailing adventures in his book The Cruise of the Snark.

Jack London's most famous works include The Call of the Wild and White Fang; both were set during the Klondike Gold Rush. At the age of 21, Jack and his sister had sailed to Dyea, Alaska, hiked the Chilkoot, and sailed the rivers, to get to Dawson City, in the Yukon Territory in 1897. His time in the Klondike would take a toll on his body. A person had to haul a year's worth of supplies into the Klondike to even be allowed to enter the harsh climate of the north, but even still, most who went there were malnourished due to the lack of produce. Jack would develop scurvy which caused his gums to swell, and experienced pain that affected his hip and muscles. He would end up losing 4 of his front teeth to scurvy before returning to California to work on publishing his stories.


Question for Friday November 20, 2015:

Imagine yourself as a university student in 1992.  Things were a lot different back then - the Cold War was finally over for the most part.  The Internet was still a relatively young entity, having evolved from something called ARPANET in the US, but still was nowhere being yet in mainstream use.  Few people outside of academia or the government had even heard about it, and commercial activity of any kind on the Internet was highly frowned upon.  But you were fortunate enough to have access for some course work that you were doing.

Near the beginning of November, you read a posting on Usenet's comp.infosystems.announce newsgroup about a relatively new undertaking that some people in Europe were working on, called the "W3 Project".  It's a relatively quiet day and you don't have any assignments due until next week, so you decide to try to check it out.  You find out that to take a look, you need to download software called "LMB", so you start up your FTP client and proceed to do so.  You then have to compile and install it yourself (this is 1992, after all - if you're using a computer at all, it's likely because you have that kind of background.  The days of "everyone" using a computer is still years away!)

When you start it up, you find that though still somewhat limited in what it can do, it does have some potential, so you decide to give the project leader some feedback. Starting from the first page of information that appears, what is the number you have to type into LMB to get the list of people involved in this project?  Keep in mind that the entire first page of information may not initially fit on your screen.  And since this isn't the 1990s any more, we don't expect you to download, compile, and install your own software.  Instead, feel free to use an online simulator of LMB.

Note:  This is the first part of a two part question.  Do NOT enter your answer into Noggin Hoggin's blank here.  Instead, go to the web address www.nogginhoggin.com/_________.html substituting your answer for the blank and then follow the instructions there to come up with your answer to the second part of this question.  When you complete that, write your answer for the SECOND part in the blank below.

Acceptable answers:


Though the Internet has existed since the early 1980s, it looked a lot different than it does now. Nowadays, a lot of people think that the Web is the Internet, when in fact it is just one way among many methods by which information is sent between computers.

In late 1990, Tim Berners-Lee at CERN (the European Organization for Nuclear Research outside of Geneva in Switzerland) envisioned what would become the World Wide Web and started writing the software for it. He wrote the first web browser and web server for the computer he was using - a NeXT (made by a company Steve Jobs founded during a time period when he wasn't working for Apple). However, those computers were very expensive and as a result not commonly used, so it wasn't until a graduate student of his, Nicola Pellow, wrote something called "Line Mode Browser", or "LMB", before it began to be more widely used by people outside of CERN. This is because LMB could be compiled and run on a lot of different types of computers.

Though Tim Berners-Lee's web browser for the NeXT was graphically-based, LMB was not. This was one of the ways it stayed compatible with as many different computers as possible. It would display web sites completely as text, and the user would type in different numbers to follow the different links. Considering that in those days, entire universities had Internet connections for everyone to share that were in most cases slower than most individuals have in their home now, text was the most efficient anyway - pictures, and especially video, just wouldn't have been practical.

Since at the time, nobody knew how popular the World Wide Web (also called the "W3 Project") would become, nobody thought to keep a copy of the first web page. Some early versions are available as screen snapshots, but the earliest version of the first web site that still exists dates from late 1992. That's why our scenario is based at that time.

Rather than have to download and compile your own copy of LMB, you can use the line mode browser simulator at CERN (line-mode.cern.ch/www/hypertext/WWW/TheProject.html to see how the web would have looked back then. The information you are looking for about people involved in the project isn't visible on the first page that appears - instead, you have to press <RETURN> to get to the next page. There you will see that typing "21" will get you to the list of people involved in the project. So for the first part of the question, you will go to www.nogginhoggin.com/21.html.

There, you are asked to find the phone number for the person who started the W3 Project, who is Tim Berners-Lee. From the page about people involved with the project you can read that to contact someone at CERN, you dial the number for CERN - +41(22)767 and then the person's extension. For Tim, his extension is 3755. So the phone number for Tim is +41(22)767 3755. But what does the "+" mean?

To dial out of a country, you have to dial that country's international exit (or direct dial) code. Different countries use different codes, so the number you dial depends on what country you are in. That's why the standard is to use "+" when writing a phone number. The idea is that you substitute that with your country's exit code. For Canada, this code is "011".

So, putting it all together, if you wanted to call Tim Berners-Lee back then, the numbers you'd have to dial on your phone are "01141227673755". But that wouldn't work now to reach him - Tim is now working at for the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) at MIT in Massachusetts, and is no longer at CERN. That phone number now belongs to Vincenzo Vagnoni, a physicist there affiliated with the National Institute of Nuclear Physics in Bologna, Italy.


Question for Saturday November 21, 2015:

You and your friend are on a school field trip to the "Jurassic Forest" dinosaur park.  Less than an hour from your school, you are amazed to see all of the animatronic dinosaurs, and get to talking about how lifelike they are.  When you get home, you do some research on animatronics and learn about all the developments and improvements to the technology done by Walt Disney.  Always a persuasive person, you manage to convince your parents about the "educational value" of a trip to Disneyworld to see some of those animatronics "in person".  Of course, it doesn't hurt that your mother works for "Vacation Airlines", that new startup company.  You never thought she would end up working for an airline, as she gets airsick more easily than anyone you've ever seen.  Maybe that's why she's quite happy in her job there as an accountant - she doesn't even have to look at the airplanes most of the time.  Regardless, one of the perks of working there is that she and anyone in your family can fly for free anywhere they fly.

She only gives one condition.  Since she gets so airsick, she'll only agree on a family trip where she spends the absolute minimum time in the air.  She gives you the schedule of flights "Vacation Airlines" is making on the Saturday a week from now when you plan to go, and leaves it up to you to find the route that will provide the least time in the air.

You have to leave from the airport closest to where you live (according to this scenario, not in real life!), and arrive at the airport closest to Disneyworld.  You can take as many flights as you want, but when transferring from one flight to another, you have to have at least a half hour between the connections or they won't allow you to book them.  And don't forget that your goal is to spend the least amount of time in the air as possible - it doesn't matter how quickly you get there.  The schedule is printed below:

Assuming that the flight schedule is perfectly accurate and on time, how many minutes would you spend in the air in total on your trip to Disneyworld?

Acceptable answers:
645 minutes


First of all, you'll need to establish what airport you're starting at and which you're ending at. The Jurassic Forest is an attraction just outside of Gibbons, Alberta, containing more than 50 animatronic dinosaurs staged in a 40 acre boreal forest environment. The closest major airport to this attraction is Edmonton (CYEG).

Disneyworld is located in Bay Lake, Florida, just outside of the city of Orlando. The airport code for Orlando is KMCO. It is important that you realized that the destination was Disneyworld, which is in Florida. If you weren't paying attention and assumed that the destination was Disneyland, located in Anaheim, California, you would have erroneously planned for a destination airport of Los Angeles (KLAX).

So now that you know you are traveling from CYEG to KMCO, you can start a systematic approach to solving this question. In visualizing which flights may work to travel between these airports, it may be helpful to sketch their routes on a map. However you do it, you'll find that the following routes are possibilities to consider:


One of the quickest things you can do to eliminate a couple of the flights is to see if you have the required 30 minutes between all the connections required. If you look at the flights, you'll see that the flight from Toronto to New York (CYYZ-KJFK) leaves at 3:10 PM, but the two flights arriving in Toronto arrive too late for that connection to be made (CYEG-CYYZ arrives at 2:55 PM, and CYYC-CYYZ arrives at 3:00 PM). So immediately, you can eliminate the first two route possibilities from consideration.

The next thing you need to realize is that flight schedules are always specified in local time - departures and arrivals in a particular city are specified using the time zone of that city. So if you're on a flight that crosses time zones, you have to take the time zone change into consideration when using the difference between arrival and departure times to calculate the duration of the flight. If you weren't aware of this, one flight in particular (CYYC-CYVR) should have highlighted this fact for you. It's listed as leaving at 8:05 AM and arriving at 8:09 AM. Clearly a flight from Calgary to Vancouver would take more than 4 minutes - in fact, it takes 64 minutes, as the traveler gains an hour in flying from Mountain Time to Pacific Time.

The easiest and most straightforward way to take the time zone changes into consideration is to find out what time zone each of the airports are in, and then convert all of the departure and arrival times into a common time zone. However, a faster method for this particular question (which works out the same mathematically) would be to ignore the time zone adjustments initially, and then make the total correction afterwards. Since Orlando time is 2 hours later than Edmonton time, if you remember to subtract 120 minutes from total flight time calculations which ignore time zone changes, you'll end up with the proper total flight duration.

From there, it is just a matter of adding up the duration of each flight into totals for each of the routes that can work. If you do this, you'll find the following totals for the number of the minutes in the air for the different possible routes:


The least amount of time taken by these routes is the last one: Edmonton - Calgary - Los Angeles - Phoenix - Dallas - Orlando, which would take a total of 645 minutes in the air. Even though you'll have a nearly 7 hour layover in Phoenix, that's okay - there is lots to see and do there, and at least nobody will be getting airsick on the ground! Though you can't help but tell your mother that she should suggest that Vacation Airlines establish a direct flight from Edmonton to Orlando!