Grade 8 student John Martinez won the first AcadeMir Charter School Middle Spelling Bee in the school’s cafeteria on December 10. The runner-up was Jason Gorelick, also in Grade 8.
The ACSM bee started with 12 students who qualified through spelling quizzes given in all classes.
“Winning felt relieving and amazing”, Martinez said after spelling his winning word, tarantula. “Confidence and studying hard is the path to achieving your goal.”
The next step for John is the Miami Herald Spelling Bee presented by Burger King Corp. That bee is hosted at Jungle Island and will take place on March 8.
“I’m not nervous about the next competition right now,” Martinez said after his win. “But I doubt I will think the same once I’m there.”
“The spelling bee motivates students through competition … students were very excited and did really well through the competition,” said Mr. Rossie, who organized the bee. “I know this year is not over yet but I am looking forward to the competition for next year already!”
In a funny twist, Martinez and Gorelick are good friends who studied together prior to the bee.
“It felt good that one of my best friends won and I am proud of myself,” Gorelick said.
“But I hate tarantulas.”
– The official dictionary of the Scripps Spelling Bee (Webster’s Third New International Dictionary) contains more than 472,000 words.
– Co-champions have been declared at the last two Scripps National Spelling Bees (2014, 2015). Prior to 2014, the last co-champions were declared in 1962.
– The Scripps National Spelling Bee was first televised in 1946 and has been aired live on ESPN or ABC every year since 1994.
– The last champion from Florida was Nupur Lala (Tampa) in 1999.