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Students Participate in Class Spelling Bees

Eighth+grader+Caroline+Yancey+holds+up+her+bee+pin+after+winning+the+contest+in+Mrs.+Devine%27s+E+period.
Eighth grader Caroline Yancey holds up her bee pin after winning the contest in Mrs. Devine's E period.

Eighth grader Caroline Yancey holds up her bee pin after winning the contest in Mrs. Devine's E period.

Mr. Crisafi

Mr. Crisafi

Eighth grader Caroline Yancey holds up her bee pin after winning the contest in Mrs. Devine's E period.

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Students weren’t just greeted by the familiar faces of friends and faculty upon their return from winter break on Tuesday, January 9. They were met with a swarm of bees! (Well, the spelling kind anyway.)

Mr. Cirsafi
Colin Stangel prepares to spell a word during the bee in Dr. James’ E period class.

The annual spelling bee has been a Benjamin tradition for a long time, and, according to English Department Chair Mrs. Kathleen Devine, is an important part of the School’s history. “The spelling bee is a tradition begun in Lower School by our school’s founders, Mr. and Mrs. Benjamin,” she said. “Mrs. Benjamin presided over these most anticipated bees for over 40 years, and when the Middle School opened, it, too, embraced and continued the tradition happily.”

The middle school English classes hosted class spelling bees to see which two students from each class would qualify for the school bee to be held on Thursday, January 18. To encourage students to do their best, the class bees counted as a quiz grade. Each student in the class bees had to make it past the first three rounds in order to receive a 100%. The bees continued until there was a first-place winner and a runner-up.

Along the way, the students not only learned how to spell new words, but also expanded their academic skill set. “The learning skills gleaned from participating in spelling bees are beneficial and apply to many disciplines,” said Devine. “Memorizing is one of those skills which helps memory, but additionally students learn about the definition and origin of words which contributes to improving their reading and writing skills.”

The 33 qualifying students received little gold-colored bee pins for advancing to the school bee. They are as follows:

8B – Devine
Matthew Postman (winner)
Sophia Smith (runner-up)

8C -Devine
Jacob Steinger (winner)
Lily Valentini (runner up)

8D – Devine
Cameron Salehi (winner)
Clara Schor (runner up)

8E – Devine
Caroline Yancey (winner)
Emeline Smith (runner up)

8E – Devine
Liam Gaeta  (winner)
Ellie Froggatt (runner-up)

7A – Bayless
Aadi Patel (winner)
Gabriel DiFilippo (runner up)

7D – Bayless
Darian Salehi (winner)
Eric Levine (runner up)

7E – Ginnetty
Frankie Cipriani (co-winner)
Dylan Richman (co-winner

7F – Ginnetty
Sarah Darby (winner)
Kate Grande  (runner-up)

7G – James
Emilie Dubiel (co-winner)
Kiran Spencer (co-winner)
Alex Fleming Lake (co-winner)

6A – Kirkman
Sofia Maciel (winner)
Owen Williams (runner-up)

6B – Ginnetty
Claire Dinh (winner)
Julian Janin (runner-up)

6C – Kirkman
Ellie Bickel (winner)
*Joey Tomasetti (runner up)
*Joey defers to the second runner-up, Zoe Cooper, to take his place in the school bee.

6D – Ginnetty
Winni Cox (winner)
Madison Kittendorf (runner-up)

6E – Kirkman
Michael Louis (winner)
*Jack Guagliano (runner up)
*Jack defers to the second runner-up, JP Jacobs, to take his place in the school bee.

6G – Kirkman
Gracie Greaton (winner)
Kylie Hazen (runner up)

These 32 students will compete in the school-wide bee next week. The winner of the school bee will then compete in the state bee in February. Similar to the class bees, in the school final, each student spells one word per round. If a contestant spells the word wrong, he or she is eliminated. Unlike the class bees, only one student goes to the state bee – the runner-up is the alternate. Good luck to all of our school finalists in next week’s bee!

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Students Participate in Class Spelling Bees