By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great local journalism.
County spelling bee Saturday at North
28 students vie for crown
Placeholder Image
Forsyth County News
If you're going

The bee will be held at 10 a.m. Saturday in the auditorium at North Forsyth High School.


Bee participants

The following students are participating in Saturday's spelling bee.

Elementary schools
* Big Creek: Sivamalai Chandrasekar
* Brookwood: Nikhil Reddy
* Chattahoochee: Elizabeth Heard
* Chestatee: Gabriel Gravitt
* Coal Mountain: Katie Bowers
* Cumming: Caylin Bennett
* Daves Creek: MacKenzie Cole
* Haw Creek: Aidan Killer
* Johns Creek: Sadhana Durbha
* Mashburn: Sydney Connor
* Matt: Cooper Meitz
* Midway: Austin Reynolds
* Sawnee: Jordan Banker
* Settles Bridge: Amitesh Chandra
* Sharon: Bryce Segat
* Shiloh Point: Caroline Stoerker
* Silver City: Kelsey Langland
* Vickery Creek: Sydney Waters
* Whitlow: Katelyn Gehring

Middle schools
* Lakeside: Aditi Talkad
* Liberty: Shannon Mewes
* Little Mill: Rivers Martin
* North Forsyth: Christopher Flanagan
* Otwell: Joshua Noel
* Piney Grove: Sophia Glick
* Riverwatch: Lauren Gascon
* South Forsyth: Arushi Bhatia
* Vickery Creek: Everlin Wang

Fourth- through eighth-graders will spell it out for top spots Saturday during the Forsyth County school system's spelling bee.

The top three spellers from the annual competition, which features the bee winners from each of the county's 28 elementary and middle schools, will advance to the district event Feb. 28 in Marietta.

In past years, just two students have advanced. This year, however, the county's population growth allowed for a third student, said Judi Jenkins, spelling bee coordinator.

All participants in the local bee will receive a trophy and certificate for being the best in their school, she said. The winners will get larger trophies and gift cards from an educational game Web site.

"Just to be up there is a great honor," Jenkins said. "It really, truly is, just to represent their school."

Not too much has changed over the years in spelling bees. One missed word and a student is out until the field narrows to two spellers.

If one finalist misses a word, the other must spell that word correctly, as well as a second word, to win.

"It usually lasts a couple hours, but you never can tell," Jenkins said. "We keep going as long as the kids keep spelling them right."

Spellers will get to introduce themselves and have a practice round at the start to get comfortable on stage, she said.

Getting used to being in front of the crowd is one important preparation for the school winners, said Jane Grebe, spelling bee coordinator for Sawnee Elementary.

At Sawnee, only fifth-graders are eligible to compete. The school spell-off takes place in front of the whole grade, with two students from each class participating.

The one who moves on faces the task of out-spelling older students at the county level.

"It is challenging for the fifth-graders when they get up there, because they're competing against the middle schoolers," she said.

Grebe said Sawnee's champion, Jordan Banker, is "very proud" to be representing the school.

Banker has a book about words and their origins to help her prepare.

Grebe, who has been coordinating the school bee for 15 years, knows what it takes to win.

The elementary school once had a student advance to the state competition.

Jenkins is keeping her hopes up for another big winner from the school system.

"We want one to win at state so we can go to D.C.," she said.