A Buzz About the Spelling Bee
Around Sayville Middle School!
“Who won the spelling bee?” was the buzz after the SCRIPPS National Spelling Bee had been held at the Middle School.
Prior to the competition, Mrs. Rooney, Director of the Spelling Bee, distributed word lists to the faculty to help the students practice. “The lists gave examples of the level of difficulty for the words that would be given, not the complete list of words,” Mrs. Rooney explained. “I had to practice many words myself for the correct pronunciation!”
The students studied the lists intensely in anticipation of the Spelling Bee. After the class contests, nineteen semifinalists—the most proficient spellers—were ready to compete in the Middle School Library. There were many spectators for this great event. Assisting Mrs. Rooney during the elimination rounds, Mrs. Galima supplied additional word definitions or sentences if needed, and in addition, took pictures to capture this memorable Middle School event.
Words on the list included “repercussion,” tragedy, “cologne,” and “fajitas,” as well as “counterfeit,” “erroneous,” and “incandescence.” After two days at the school-level competition, three finalists shook hands and competed for First Place.
Sixth-graders Sean O’Halloran and Amanda Wessels and Seventh grader Francis Reilly faced-off with their impressive spelling skills. Considered winners already for making it to the finals, each student felt relaxed during the last round of the competition.
The word “recurrence” became the winning word when Seventh-grader Francis spelled it correctly and won the First Place title. The competition was so close that Sixth-graders Sean and Amanda tied for Second Place. After the competitors shook hands again and complimented one another for their spelling abilities, Amanda’s friends Kailee and Ryann offered encouraging words, “Amanda is a human dictionary. It’s a natural gift! We are sure she will compete next year, too!” Sean also expressed his confidence that he would compete again because, “I’m scrumptious at spelling!” Pleased with his win, Francis admitted, “It has been a great opportunity for me to win the Spelling Bee because now I am going to the next level. I am very excited and will do my best!”
We know you will, Francis, and wish you luck! Also, congratulations to Sean and Amanda. See you next year!