Spelling Bee Buzz!

B. Gasior & J. Galbreath, Gifted Resource Specialists

Best of the Spelling Bee

Resources for School Spelling Bees

Spelling Bee is 90 Years Old!

The National Spelling Bee first started in 1925 when nine newspapers joined together to host a spelling bee. Little did they know that 90 years later their literacy effort would reach 11 million students every year!

School Spelling Bees in CCS

CCS also has a long history of spelling bee competitions. The Gifted and Talented Department no longer hosts a district spelling bee but you can still offer this opportunity to your students! Registering your school at the Scripps Spelling Bee website will give you access to all the resources you need to have a classroom, grade level or school spelling bee. Registration also ensures that your school winner is eligible to take the online test that qualifies for the Regional Spelling Bee at Ohio University in the spring.

Spelling Bee Registration

REGISTER HERE AT SCRIPPS NATIONAL SPELLING BEE Early Bird Deadline is 10/16/17 - If you would like to hold a spelling bee at your school, be sure to register with Scripps so you have access to all the materials including word lists, pronouncer guides, study materials and tips as well as online resources. There is also an optional vocabulary component. Registration is quick and easy! THERE IS NO COST - ALL REGISTRATION FEES ARE COVERED BY THE OHIO LOTTERY.

Important Dates

These dates are ONLY if you would like your winning student to be eligible for participation in the Regional Spelling Bee at Ohio University. This is not required for you to have a competition at your school. If you would like your winner to take the online test, plan to hold your school bee prior to 1/16/17.

12/12/16 - Deadline to enroll your school at spellingbee.com
1/16/17 - Deadline to register school champion for the online test
1/18/17 - 50-item online test first becomes available
2/3/17 - Deadline to administer the 50-word online test
2/13/17 - School champion's online test results become available
2/13/17 - List of qualifying students emailed to enrolled schools
3/18/17 - Scripps College of Communication Regional Spelling Bee, Ohio University

Helpful Spelling Bee Resources

The resources below are sample materials to help you get started. You can also contact the Gifted Resource Specialist at your school for ideas and guidance.

Classroom Level - Qualifying for the School Bee

Use this Classroom Spelling Test and Study List to see an example of how a spelling bee can easily be organized for grades 3-6. All word lists are updated with words from the 2016-17 pronouncer guides. Teachers provide the word list and students take a written test to qualify for the school bee. Or, teachers can work together to determine the top spellers from their grade level in a different way.

Additional resource:

Spelling Bee Task Cards can be used to with any word list or to make a learning center.

School Spelling Bee

Once grade level winners are determined, provide students with this School Bee Participant Letter and Study List. NOTE: This study list is from the CLASSROOM BEE PRONOUNCER GUIDE, NOT THE SCHOOL BEE PROUNOUNCER GUIDE. If the Classroom Guide is used for the school bee, then the School Guide can be on hand for additional words if necessary. This How to Study for a Spelling Bee Guide is also helpful.These Spelling and Vocabulary Websites can be used for additional word study. Use this SAMPLE CERTIFICATE or create one of your own.

Suggestions - Preparing for the Spelling Bee

  1. Set a date for the school spelling bee - usually in December or early January. The deadline to register for the online test is 1/16/17.
  2. Distribute the Classroom Spelling Test and Study List to participating teachers. Include deadlines for administering the written test or choosing students for the school bee in another way - usually in December so students can study word lists over break.
  3. Gather names of top spellers from each grade and create a list (EXCEL) of participants.
  4. Provide participants with the School Bee Participant Letter and Study List. All word lists can be found at spellingbee.com. Meet with the students as a group to offer study tips and encouragement.
  5. Order trophies or ribbons for winning students (i.e. 1st, 2nd, 3rd place).
  6. Arrange for spelling bee judges and announcer (school support staff, principal, community volunteers, etc...) One announcer and 2-3 judges.
  7. Make a copy of the pronouncer guide and spelling rules for each judge and the announcer. Provide pencils. Suggestion: Use the CLASSROOM PRONOUNCER GUIDE for the school spelling bee and have the SCHOOL PRONOUNCER GUIDE on hand for extra words if necessary.
  8. Print participation certificates for each student.
  9. Print name tags with a number so students sit in numerical order on the stage.
  10. Invite parents, and participating classes to the school bee.
  11. Day of the bee - have students sit on stage in numerical order, set up judges table and microphone for announcer. Hold the spelling bee competition using the Spelling Bee Rules and guidelines in the pronouncer guide.
  12. More information can be found by registering at spellingbee.com.

Interesting Spelling Bee Facts

Why is a Spelling Bee Called a Bee?

The word bee, as used in spelling bee, is one of those language puzzles that has never been satisfactorily accounted for. A fairly old and widely-used word, it refers to a community social gathering at which friends and neighbors join together in a single activity (sewing, quilting, barn raising, etc.) usually to help one person or family. The earliest known example in print is a spinning bee, in 1769. However, there are contradicting stories to the origin of the meaning. Visit the Scripps Spelling Bee website for more information!

Winning Words!

Every year, a winner is crowned the champion at the National Spelling Bee. Show your students the 2016 winning words!

feldenkrais - used for a system of aided body movements intended to increase body awareness and ease tension.

gesellschaft - a rationally developed mechanistic type of social relationship characterized by impersonally contracted associations between persons.

Now how is that for a challenge?!

Integrating Math!

Visit the Statistics Page and have students learn the math behind the spelling bee!

Learn about the age ranges, grades, repeat participants and more! Can students research the statistics over time? Number of boys vs. girls? Number of siblings?

What?!! No Spelling Bee?

Did you know that there were no spelling bee winners in 1943, 1944 or 1945? That is because it was called off due to World War II. Visit this 25 Facts about the National Spelling Bee Site to learn more!
2016 Spellebrity Video Contest Winner - Mary N.