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Divisional Round Qualifiers from Paramount School, Rajshahi Irtiza-Al-Wasee (class 8), Mushfiq Olive (class 8), Maisha Tanzim (class 9) and Mohammad Ridwan Hossain (class 9).
Divisional Round Qualifiers from Barisal Govt Girls' High School Shanta Jahan (class 9),Tawneza Mrinal (class 8) and Nafisa Abedin(class 8).

The ones that got away

Ok, so the guys at champs21.com inform us that a few of the schools that participated in the Spelling Bee outside of Dhaka did not get a shoutout in our daily reports for the main paper so this section is for you guys, especially since both these schools performed admirably can be considered a few of the highlights of the competition so far.

Our judge from champs21.com Rezwan Habib had this to say after the event, “The girls were very enthusiastic with over 100 girls cheering the 30 participants on. The quality of spelling was also very high and it was nice to see a school in Barisal show awareness about the Spelling Bee and take it so seriously.”

Our judge from champs21.com Hasib Raj had this to say after the event, “They were unbelievably good. We went all the way upto the 'Very Hard' section of the word bank to come up with the three qualifiers and even then we couldn't. So we settled with four. They were by far the best performers in Rajshahi and close to 80 students from the school are playing the online Spelling Bee game since the visit.”

Don’t let the cat bite

Here's another familiar spelling rule: "Silent e helps a vowel say its name." This means that when a word ends with a vowel followed by a consonant and then silent e, the vowel has a long sound. That's the difference between rate and rat, hide and hid, and cube and cub.

But spelling rules, like all other rules, are hard to remember mainly because rules usually make things go boring. So for now, remember use the simple analogy of 'bite and bit'. If it's unpleasant, like being bit by your pet cat, then there's probably no e after it. Happy spelling, people!


By Moyukh

S-u-b-r-a-m-i-n-e. What do you say to someone who just made that mistake for a word so simple that out of excitement the r and m switched places? The pronouncers keep reminding the participants to relax, ask for the meaning, usage in sentence, to make sure they got the word right before attempting to spell it.

Pablo Stanley was right about Homophones
Yes, dawn and don sounds similar. But if Marlon Brando was Dawn Corleone, it would have been a whole lot easier to refuse his offers. Look out for homophones. It's easy to get excited hearing an easy word, especially during the finals rounds, but asking for the meaning can decide between you being the next spelling idol and sitting idle at home.

Word of the Hive
By Shahnoor Rabbani

After covering the Spelling Bee last year, I can tell you that it would have been close to impossible to do the same on my own this year. The number of schools has tripled from 100 to 300 (approximate numbers, people) this time around, with other parts of the country apart from Dhaka getting some much needed love from the dedicated team at Champs21.com. An average of four schools is being visited daily by the team at Champs, which is again more than twice from that of last time.

Now I'm not here to bore you with a winners list but rather, bore you with my thoughts and opinions on the competition so far, and from what I have seen.

First and foremost, let me emphasise how important it is for students interested to play and perform well in the online Spelling Bee game in champs21.com. The bulk of the students who will qualify for the Divisional Round will be top scorers from the online game. So if you're interested in being part of the competition, go and play the online game as many times as you want and try and score as much as you can because only your top score will be selected.

At the same time, knowing that Internet availability is almost a myth in most parts of the country, especially outside of the capital, not all the interested students will be able to participate. So it's good to see the team at champs being lenient with student selection from schools outside of Dhaka (selecting 4 instead of three top spellers in a lot of occasions), especially since some of them have downright outperformed some of the schools in Dhaka.

Moving on, it's quite evident that people are still coming to terms with the idea of a Spelling Bee and how it works in a lot of the schools that are being visited for the first time by Champs. So having more schools this time around was an absolute necessity if the Spelling Bee is to become bigger and better and so that awareness of proper spelling is raised (even more so for those that work in Champs and decide to type in shorthand and don't give me that “it's a choice” mumbo jumbo).

Another thing I have realised is how difficult it is, logistically, to organise an event of such magnitude, especially in Bangladesh. Bangladeshis are inherently disorganised in my opinion and like making last minute changes to plans. There have been quite a few instances of schools making last minute changes to plans and as a result the school would not get visited by champs for activations, with them being pushed back to a later date. And Bangaldeshi logic dictates that tardiness equates to being disorganised; or is that the general/global consensus? Anyways that is beyond the point.

Finally, it has come to my attention that some people don't understand the point of a Spelling Bee, or how it helps students in real life. For me, it's simple –learning proper spelling can't hurt, and for one our country is in dire need of it. And secondly, if the Spelling Bee was available during my time, I would have loved to have taken part in it; plus knowing that I'd be winning money and going for an all-expense paid trip to USA or even being on TV, would have got me chomping at the bit to participate. Before I leave you, I need to give this a spell check.


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