SOUND IT OUT Pictured, from left: Middle School Principal Barb Shea, spelling bee runner-up Michaela Reed, winner Jessica Jonczyk and English teacher John Stroud. Photo submitted by Susan Melski.
HAMBURG Area schools hosted an annual spelling bee this past January. Eighth grade student Jessica Jonczyk was the winner of the Frontier Middle School spelling bee; the runner-up was eighth grade student Michaela Reed.
The process began in October. English teacher John Stroud contacted all of the English language arts teachers and supplied them with word lists for the students who were interested in taking the spelling bee list to study. In December, those students were given a written test, on which they had to recognize the correct spelling among three incorrect spellings.
The top five spellers from each grade were selected (seven from the sixth graders, because of ties). Seventeen students competed for the middle school spelling bee winner, while parents and friends were invited to watch.
The bee lasted for 17 rounds and more than 100 different words. Michaela went out on chimera, which is a grotesque animal form in sculpture or painting, compounded from the parts of different or real animals.
Jessica spelled isochronous, which is equal in duration and querulous, or expressing or suggestive of complaint. The student credited Stroud for her success with the spelling bee.