Spellers go word-for-word in Sheepshead Bay vocab contest

Champion spellers: The top six winners will compete in a citywide competition this spring.
Photo by Steve Solomonson

Can you spell first place?

Tough stuff: Forty-two students competed in the District 20 and District 21 spelling bee at IS 98 in Sheepshead Bay.
Photo by Steve Solomonson

IS 187 eighth-grader Aaron Ng will advance to a citywide spelling bee after beating 41 other middle school students from Bay Ridge to Brighton Beach in an annual district-wide vocab contest on Jan. 23.

Ready, set, spell: Students prepared for the spelling contest for three months.
Photo by Steve Solomonson

The English language showdown, held at IS 98 in Sheepshead Bay, included “Hawaiian,” “formaldehyde,” and other hard-to-spell words.

Runners-up included Tammy Wu.
Photo by Steve Solomonson

Contestants trained for the spell-off by reading popular young-adult writers such as Suzanne Collins — author of the hit series “The Hunger Games” — and Sharon Creech, said Marietta Falconieri, the school’s librarian and spelling bee coordinator.

And Lourdes Carrion, who showed off the certificate she won for her spelling prowess.
Photo by Steve Solomonson

“The students who participated are highly motivated and voracious readers,” said Falconieri. “The spelling bee is based on their love for literature. The more they read, the more new vocabulary they learn.”

Ng and the five runners-up in the word war will compete in a citywide contest later this spring.

Reach reporter Daniel Bush at dbush@cnglocal.com or by calling (718) 260-8310. Follow him at twitter.com/dan_bush.

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