CHICAGO

Colby Burnett Jeopardy! Win: Chicago Area Teacher Headed To Teachers Tournament Finals

11/17/2012 12:43 pm ET | Updated Nov 18, 2012

This 28-year-old AP History teacher from Chicago won the semi-final round of the Jeopardy! Teachers Tournament on Friday.

Answer: Who is Colby Burnett.

During Friday's matchup, Burnett sailed to victory by correctly answering the Final Jeopardy! question, "This 1890 piece was named for a Verlaine poem that begins “Your soul is as a moonlit landscape fair."

The tournament of 15 is a two-week competition among "the country's brightest educators." The winner of next week's finals takes home the $100,000 prize and a guaranteed spot in the Jeopardy! Tournament of Champions.

Burnett revealed his plans for the money if he wins it all next Tuesday.

"It's not going to me; my mom needs a house," Burnett said in a Jeopardy interview. "I'd have her endorse the check if I could, along with me. Is it life-changing money for me? Not necessarily. But it is life-changing money for my family."

An alumnus of Fenwick, Burnett told the Tribune his mother Wilma, who lives in the city's Austin neighborhood, worked the night shift to help pay his tuition when he attended the college prep school.

"My mother has sacrificed so much and never complained," he said. "If I could repay that in kind, that'd be great."

Before the finals, the Jeopardy! Clue Crew came to Burnett's AP History classroom in Oak Park where students have been cheering on their teacher throughout the tournament. Jeopardy! donated a version of Classroom Jeopardy! to Fenwick for Burnett's participation.

Burnett faces off against teachers from Charlottesville, Va. and Montgomery, Ala. on Monday and Tuesday.

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