Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Observing the District Spelling Bee

Ever since watching the film Akeelah and the Bee over a year ago, my kids have been way into having spelling bees at home. It was a very inspiring film for them and they attacked the subject of spelling with a new kind of conviction.

Today we ventured out to watch the district spelling bee for 4th & 5th graders in our region. It was an interesting thing to experience and the atmosphere is one in which you could hear a pin drop... despite this little Ruby and Fawn did wonderfully and allowed the rest of us to focus on the spellers.
I was amazed at the 12 kids we observed in the 4th grade group and what good spellers they are. I consider myself a good speller and enjoyed the opportunity to visualize the words in my mind as they were called off... but I must admit, there were two words I got wrong! In the "spell down" to break the 4 way tie between the final four 4th grade students the words were surprisingly difficult... and now of course I cannot even recall any to list as an example (we were all getting weary of the pressure of complete silence by now and restlessness of body and mind were settling in after nearly 2 hours). In the end, the boy that Elliot had predicted would be the winner prevailed and carried away the trophy to move on to state competition in a few weeks.

All of us enjoyed the opportunity, and when we returned home the kids immediately hit their lists to study for their own spelling test scheduled for later today. They did however express relief that I had not copied down the words from the bee to create their future word lists from!

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