Blog #7: Spelling Bee

I have been at the current school that I teach at for 3 years now. The superintendent that was there, had been there for 37 years. He finally retired, and we got a younger, more enthusiastic superintendent that is not stuck in a rut. Don’t get me wrong, the previous superintendent was a nice guy, but he did not like change. When we got this current superintendent, he wanted lots of changes for our school that involved the students and pushing them to be successful and competitive. With all that being said, a group of teachers and myself came up with “The Scholar Bowl.”

The scholar bowl basically consists of a spelling bee and a math bee. The spelling bee will be conducted in the fall, and the math bee in the spring. There are 7 schools in the district that I teach, and we just finished our spelling bee.

We conducted the spelling bee for grades second through eighth grade. We had each teacher conduct a spelling bee in their classroom, Each classroom had a winner and a runner up that would compete in the county spelling bee.

The classroom spelling bee was conducted two weeks before the county spelling bee so we could give the participants enough time to ready themselves for the county competition.

Each student was given a word list from their grade level and the next grade level up. For example, second grade would get the second grade list, as well as the third grade list to study. We did this so it could be more challenging for the students. I got the words lists from this site:http://www.spelling-words-well.com/spelling-bee-word-list.html

The students were transported to a central school by bus for the county spelling bee. The competition went great for the first time to be held, but there are lots of changes that will be done for next year.

At the county spelling bee, there was three winners from each grade level. There was a first, second, and third place winner. Each winner received a trophy. The first place winners received a $25.00 cash reward, Second place received a $10.00 cash reward, and third place received a $5.00 cash reward. The cash was donated by a local church and a local business. Also, each participant, received a certificate.

I have recently found this blog:http://spellingbee.com/bee-blog/bee/help-theres-a-bee-in-my-classroom, and I will be using it for my next spelling bee preparations. This blog is put out by the National Spelling Bee and it has lots of great ideas and suggestions. I sure wished I could have found it beforehand, but hindsight is always a learning process.

I forgot to mention that this was not a one person thing, and I had lots of help in preparing for this. We had to do brochures, word lists, back drops, order trophies, get donations, print certificates, and so much more that I can’t even imagine. SO , if you are planning on conducting a spelling bee for your school, make sure you have lots of time to put into it, and not to mention some of your own money!

I really did enjoy doing the spelling bee, and the students was so excited. I am looking forward to the math bee in the spring so stay tuned!

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