National Spelling Bee becoming easier to predict

National Spelling Bee becoming easier to predict

Amelia Ballingall of Manchester, New Hampshire's champion speller heading today to the Scripps National Spelling Bee in Washington, D.C., is one determined eighth-grader.

Last year, sister Harmony, now a Southern Local High freshman, punched her ticket to the national bee, but was eliminated in the morning preliminary round after misspelling "accipiter".

In the state bee, she had to spell "trullo" a round stone building with a conical roof and without mortar found in southern Italy.

But things have changed since Kelly was 4.

The victor of the Scripps National Spelling Bee will receive cash and prizes along with fame and national recognition across the country.

"We told her from the time she was little that she didn't have to be in the spelling bees just because her sisters were", said her mother, Debbi Mills.

Phoebe's interest in the contest was born just three months ago, at Northley Middle School, where she's a 6th grader.

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Riley Hamp from Waynesboro will also be competing.

"He did compete this year at the school bee, but he got nervous and missed his first word", Mrs. "It's really nice to see the community supporting her", said Matthews.

While the spelling bee is the highlight of Bee Week, Scripps has a whole week of activities planned for the spellers and their families beginning today, when they arrive at the Gaylord National Resort and Convention Center in National Harbor, Md.

The national competition begins Tuesday, when all spellers take a preliminary multiple-choice spelling and vocabulary test.

"I'm using outside websites more rather than just relying on the national site", Prasad said.

"It's a really good opportunity for me and it's exciting that I get to go and represent Robinson".

Wiggins said in addition to the spelling bee, he is looking forward to a Memorial Day barbecue for the competitors and their families at Nationals Park, where the Washington Nationals major league baseball team plays.

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The national bee is next week, with the finals on June 1 to be broadcast live on ESPN.

Wiggins spelled "femininity" for the win at Hobart and William Smith, although he and Penird ripped through a number of uncommon, obscure words in the rounds before that.

She said she's been preparing by studying a few printed dictionaries, the online unabridged dictionary and some Hexco study tool booklets.

Riley has worked hard for this moment, but she has had incredible help along the way.

And when that doesn't help, she said she takes a deep breath and gives it her best shot. "Her love of reading has exposed her to a lot of words". The regional Scripps Spelling Bee has been sponsored for many years by The Dispatch•The Rock Island Argus•QC Online at Augustana College's Centennial Hall, and previous to that by The Rock Island Argus. "But they all learned to bounce back from that and try again".

Ria Sai, 13, qualified for the 90th Scripps National Spelling Bee in Oxon Hill, Maryland, after finishing first in February at the WITF Central Pennsylvania Spelling Bee with the correct spelling of the word Polynesian.

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