It was a crisp Friday morning in February. Two rows of chairs lined the Junction School auditorium stage. The elementary students sat patiently, listening to instructions from Mr. McCoy, with their ankles crossed, or tip toes to the ground and knees wiggling.
Slowly, the audience began trickling in. Parents sat in front, sharing the nerves with their children. Mr. McCoy welcomed everyone, and introduced the three judges. One at a time, the contestants took the podium.
The announcer, in her gentle voice, spoke the spelling words. The children replied, “Can you use the word in a sentence, please?” “Would you please repeat the word?”
After a few rounds, the nerves lightened. “Kisses” spoke the announcer. The little blonde boy in a blue shirt smiled and his cheeks turned a slight hue of red before he replied, “Kisses. K-I-S-S-E-S. Kisses.” The students in the audience giggled. “Gangster,” spoke the announcer, and the children burst into laughter.
Little-by-little, the competition waned. Finally, the last three competitors remained. Excitement seized the room. The spelling words toughened. “Cheapskate.” “Eternity.” “Humorist.” A tense silence drew from the crowd as each letter was pronounced into the microphone, then “oooh!” and “awww!” filled the air when the judges held up their smiley faced cards – “Correct!”
The elementary school spelling bee winners who captivated us all with their brilliance, and dazzling stage character, were:
First Place: Rosa Miranda
Second Place: Landon Stark
Third Place: Matty Gouvea
I asked the students how they felt afterward. Landon told me, “At the end, I was getting nervous!” – a huge smile beamed upon his face. Matty told me the funniest word was “swagger”. Rosa said the experience was “nerve wracking!”
Following the elementary school event, the middle schoolers took the stage. Easily rattling off spelling words that stumped their parents in the audience, the students dazzled us with charm, suspense, excitement, and comedy. The middle school winners were:
First place: Andrew Shanks
Second place: Rebecca Wright
Third place: Kacey McGee
Please join us in proud congratulations to these fabulous students. The Elementary Student Council hosted the Spelling Bee.
Elementary School Photos!