Thirty-six students ranging in grades from fourth through
eighth joined in the competition. In the end it was Northwest
fourth-grader Katherine Lewis who excelled in spelling, with
Northwest fifth-grader Ashlan Francis coming in second.
first round of competition, the word "woodchuck" was the first one
to stump a student. When it was misspelled, the young man making the
attempt was sent to the back row of chairs in the school gymnasium.
He wasn't there alone for long, though, as six other students soon
In round 2, eight faltered on words such as "discreet," "bevel,"
"wigwam" and "cleanser" and went to the back of the room.
By the end of the third round, only 15 remained in the
competition, as students were stumped by the words "grotto,"
"succeed," "mattress," "anvil" and "candidate."
In round 4, "league," "pallet" and "tamale" took three more out
of the competition.
By round 5, the words were becoming increasingly difficult and
students faltered on the words "perennial," "piccolo," "elixir,"
"filament" and "nugget" but aced words such as "hominy" and
In the sixth round, the number of competitors dropped to five.
Among the correctly spelled words were "furlong," "fresco" and
"satellite," while "corpuscle," "muslin" and "provolone" proved to
be too much for the young spellers.
Round 7 began with Katherine correctly spelling "interrupt." The
next three competitors misspelled "libretto," "curriculum" and
"receipt." When Ashlan stepped up to the microphone, her word was
"caucus," which she misspelled.
District 27 librarian Elaine Knight was presenting the words to
the students. She stopped the competition at this point and
explained that in order to name a winner, either Katherine or Ashlan
would have to spell two consecutive words correctly. Katherine would
be the first up. If she missed her words, then Ashlan would have
another shot at the title.
Katherine was first given the word "hundredth," which she spelled
correctly. Her second word was "ghoul," and again she aced it,
making her this year's champion speller in District 27, with Ashlan
coming in second.
Each of the girls received a loud round of applause from the
large crowd that had gathered to watch. The girls also received gift
certificates from Prairie Years, and Katherine was awarded a trophy.
[to top of second column]
Students who participated in the spelling bee were:
Bryson Harold, Mia Hullinger, Chloe Laubenstein and Johnathan
Madison Farris, Jacob Franklin, Zoey Lowe and Ivy Pierce
Katherine Lewis and Dalton Westcott
Ashlan Francis and Kiersten Little
Landen Lessen, Aria Pumfrey, Ozzie Treakle and Sydney Worth
Abby Bishop, Audrey Dennison, Kate Maupin, Carley Robbins and
High School sixth-graders
Briona Brown, Austin Daggett, Ethan Keller and Eric Nguyen
Kylee Foster, Jarrett Poole, Ryan Rohlfs, Trent Whitham and Evan
Nate Gleason, Paige Lowe, Anna Menge, Tannah Snodgrass and Ty
LJHS special education
[By NILA SMITH]