music in the park san jose

Local students face the thrill of V-I-C-T-O-R-Y and the agony of
D-E-F-E-A-T Feb. 25-26 when the annual San Benito County Spelling
Bee Championship begins.
Local students face the thrill of V-I-C-T-O-R-Y and the agony of D-E-F-E-A-T Feb. 25-26 when the annual San Benito County Spelling Bee Championship begins.

The county holds two spelling competitions – one for fourth, fifth and sixth graders and one for seventh and eighth graders. The preliminary round of competition begins with a written test Tuesday, Feb. 25 for fourth, fifth and sixth graders and Wednesday, Feb. 26 for the middle school students. The event begins at 6:45 p.m. in the Gabilan Hills Elementary School multi-purpose room.

“It’s fun for kids who excel academically to have some recognition,” said Kim O’Connor, event organizer and educational consultant for the county office of education. “We need more academic challenges.”

The words that will challenge the students come from a list chosen by the state competition. They vary in difficulty from “advise” to “cinematographer” in the elementary-school category and “brief” to “eminence” to “kaleidoscope” for the middle-school students.

Contestants must be registered students in the county. They can be home-schooled or come from public or private schools, said Tim Foley, county superintendent of schools.

“We’ve had an excellent response by opening it up like this,” he said. “It’s so gratifying to see. It’s like what you’d get out at a sporting event.”

The preliminary round features a 50-word written test graded by three different judges. The top 25 spellers go on to the county championships.

O’Connor said students really get into the competition.

“Kids really study for this thing,” she said. “They learn so much. They learn public speaking, memorizing and sportsmanship.”

Most of the students who do well in the spelling bee are readers because they see the words a lot, O’Connor said.

The championship for fourth, fifth and sixth graders will be held Tuesday, March 11, and Wednesday, March 12 for middle-school students. The top two spellers from each grade level category will represent the county at the California State Spelling Bee Championships.

Trophies will be awarded at the county competition, but the stakes get higher at the state event, where the top prize is a $1,000 savings bond.

Students interested in competing can pick up an entry form at the office of education, 460 Fifth St.

Previous articleProposal for the ages: Seniors to wed
Next articleMessage to those who protest with a bitter hatred of America
A staff member wrote, edited or posted this article, which may include information provided by one or more third parties.

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here