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W-I-N-N-E-R-S: Spelling bee champs headed to provincials

Kids earn the right after being victorious at Greater Sudbury Spelling Bee

Some of the city’s best young spellers took to the stage April 10 at the 12th annual Greater Sudbury Spelling Bee.

The event took place in the council chambers at Tom Davies Square and proved to be one of the most exciting competitions to date, said Jana Bolton, the new chapter president with the Spelling Bee of Canada. She said she was thrilled with the talent and determination showcased by dozens of Sudbury youngsters.

Students vied for trophies and cash prizes totaling $1,800 in three divisions: primary (ages 6 to 8), junior (ages 9 to 11) and intermediate (ages 12 to 14).

“I had to laugh when the word ‘nerve-racking’ was asked of a speller, because I felt it described that moment of the competition,” Bolton said. “It was nail-biting … a close race.”

Bolton said she was amazed by the confidence displayed by each and every competitor.

“These kids can spell, but they are also gaining skills that will be invaluable for life, such as public speaking, study habits, poise, the ability to think, decode and memorize — all under pressure and in front of a crowd.”

Students studied 400 words in preparation for the regional bee, and the last contestants standing entered the tie-breaker rounds where words are pulled from the Canadian Oxford Dictionary, words that the students may have never seen or heard before.

Three spelling champions will go on to represent Sudbury at the provincial competition in Toronto on May 15. 

Ameer Ahmed, from Carl A. Nesbitt Public School, won the primary division spelling “together.”

Nehan Punjani, from MacLeod Public School, took home the junior trophy spelling “justify.” 

Brendon Matusch, from Sudbury Christian Academy, spelled “microbe” to earn the title of intermediate champ.