The Jane E. Tuitt Primary School held its annual Primary Spelling Bee on Friday, February 3 to encourage students to attain excellence in spelling and vocabulary development. Twenty-two students participated in this year’s competition.
Principal Thelca Bedminster welcomed students, teachers, staff and parents to the joyous occasion, highlighting the progress students are making in literacy. Third grade teacher, Ms. Francis read the Spelling Bee rules aloud, and both the Star Spangled Banner and the Virgin Islands March were sung by students. Second grade teacher, Ms. Popo made brief introductions of the 22 students, highlighting their hobbies, future goals and their favorite part of preparing for the Spelling Bee.
Following the introduction, first graders James Garlanza, Nahkai Bastien and J’Quasi Testamark stood before the competitors to give the official Spelling Bee salute, which encouraged the students to focus, think before they speak and enjoy the competition.
Students, dressed in green t-shirts with the 2017 Spelling Bee insignia and their numbers, brought their A-game to the stage by spelling intermediate and junior high-level words. They also displayed their vast vocabulary by spelling homophones and homonyms.
The Spelling Bee lasted just under 30 rounds with the last 12 being a battle between 3rd graders Itandje Hazel and Emmanuel Fleury. In the end, Itandje came in as first runner up and Emmanuel correctly spelled the word “mosque” to become the Jane E. Tuitt Primary 2017 Spelling Bee champion.
Principal Bedminster presented each participant with a small participation award and a gift bag filled with treats and prizes. The second and third finishers, Maykaiya Smith and Na’Jee Clark-Richardson, also in the third grade, received awards and special acknowledgement for their consistency throughout the competition. Itandje received a first place trophy and Emmanuel Fleury was awarded a championship trophy. They both also received a certificate and goody bag.
Myroon Hosein, Mae Peppino and Shiegfred Arambala served as judges, and Annie Smith and Tracey Thompson-Johnson were the official pronouncers for the Bee.
Jane E. Tuitt's 2017 Spelling Bee Champ Emmanuel Fleury. First runner up Itandje Hazel Principal Thelca Bedminster congratulates Top Three students, L to R: First runner up, Itandje Hazel; winner Emmanuel Fleury; and second place winner, Maykaiya Smith.