Spring Valley student to start entering National Spelling Contest
A 12-year-old who completed his seventh year at Santa Sophia Academy in Spring Valley this month is among 209 contestants in the 2021 Scripps National Spelling Bee which started on Saturday on a virtual basis.
Christian Antonio qualified for the National Bee by winning the San Diego Union-Tribune Countywide Spelling Bee held on March 17 via Zoom. He correctly spelled huipil – a garment worn in Mexico and Central America – to win the 37 spellings contest.
Christian is the best player on his tennis team. His hobbies include drawing digital art, solving different types of Rubik’s Cubes quickly, and playing the guitar.
Christian enjoys traveling the world. He visited 17 countries.
Christian has won his school’s annual poetry / speech competition every year since kindergarten.
San Diego County produced two National Spelling Contest Champions: Anurag Kashyap in 2005 and Snigdha Nandipati in 2012.
Saturday’s preliminaries consist of three rounds of oral competition.
In the first round, spellings are asked to spell a word. If they spell it correctly, they will immediately enter the second round, answering a multiple choice question about the meaning of a word.
If they answer correctly, they will be asked to spell another word.
The spellings answering the three questions correctly will advance to the quarter-finals on Tuesday.
The preliminaries will be televised by the ESPN3 streaming service from 7 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. PT.
All competitions up to the semi-finals will take place on a virtual basis. The top 10-12 finalists will travel to the ESPN Wide World of Sports complex in Bay Lake, Florida for the finals, which will be held on July 8.
The bee is limited to students who were in eighth grade or below on August 31, 2020. Participants are aged 9 to 15 years old.
The domain includes spellings for the 50 states and the District of Columbia, as well as schools in Guam, Puerto Rico, the US Virgin Islands, and the Department of Defense in Europe.
Four foreign countries are also represented: the Bahamas, Canada, Ghana and Japan.
The winner will receive $ 50,000, a commemorative medal and the Scripps Cup, the official trophy of the Scripps National Spelling Bee Championship, from Scripps, which owns television stations and cable and broadcast networks.
The winner will also receive $ 2,500 and a comprehensive reference library from the Merriam-Webster dictionary editor; $ 400 of Encyclopedia Britannica reference books, including a replica of the 1768 encyclopedia and a three-year online subscription.
The coronavirus pandemic prompted organizers to make several changes to the bee in addition to running the competition on a virtual basis until the semifinals and dropping a multiple choice test with 12 spelling words and 14 vocabulary questions
A proprietary online testing platform has been developed to provide educators and other program sponsors with an alternative and easily accessible mechanism for administering bee testing at the local level, allowing greater flexibility to participate while still meeting requirements. response to the pandemic.
The organizers also provided advice to schools and sponsors who conducted video conferences on spelling.
The Bee has contracted with a technology provider to create a level playing field and competition space so that every spelling of the national final has the same virtual experience.
The seller also provided the bee with tracking information to maintain the integrity of the competition.
In an effort to replicate bee camaraderie among spellings and make spellings and families feel like Bee Week, organizers have designed a virtual suite of programs, with space to connect and celebrate their achievements.
Virtual events for spellings and families included a virtual launch party, including a family scavenger hunt and dance party, and a virtual Friday opening ceremony live on Facebook and YouTube.
The field fell 62.8% from the record field of 562 when the last bee was in 2019, mainly due to the discontinuation of the RSVBee program, which gave students living in areas without sponsored regional competitions. the ability to switch to the National Bee with Spellings in competitive regions, where one spelling is declared the winner among thousands of schools.
The program was first offered for the 2018 Bee and this year’s champion, Karthik Nemmani, of McKinney, Texas, was an RSVBee participant.
The decision on whether the program will return in 2022 has not been made because “the bee is laser focused on the 2021 competition and creates a fun and memorable experience for its 209 finalists this year”, Becca Cochran McCarter, Head of Scripps, external communications, told City News Service.
“The Scripps National Spelling Bee is always evaluating its program to ensure that it is the best experience for everyone and that it provides the best opportunity for spellings around the world,” said Cochran McCarter.
–City news service