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Monday December 17, 2018 at 2:46pm Age: 188 days
Category: Middle School, District


“Youthful,” “humanitarian” and “frippery” were the winning words of the day at the fourth annual Minisink Valley Middle School Spelling Bee, where students demonstrated their spelling proficiency in the sixth, seventh and eighth-grade levels.


Anna Warnken won the sixth-grade competition; Sophia Skinner was the seventh-grade winner; and Noah McGinnis won the eighth-grade competition at the three bees held in the middle school library on Dec. 17. 


Sophia and Noah will advance to regional spelling bee competition at Orange/Ulster BOCES, to be held next year.


“Spelling bees give students the opportunity to compete in a friendly, academic forum, build confidence and enhance public speaking skills,” said Librarian Maggie Spicehandler.   "Strong spelling skills strengthen vocabulary use, language development and reading competency.”

Spelling bees are thought to have U.S. origins.  The word bee, as used in spelling bee, is a fairly old and widely-used word, referring to a community social gathering at which friends and neighbors join together in a single activity (sewing, quilting, barn raising, etc.) usually to help one person or family. 


Sixth-grade participants were: Mia Abruzzes, Erin Burke, Patrick Cherry, Max Earl, Giavanna Gangi, Keith Henry, Sienna Munsch, Angel Rodriguez and Anna Warnken.


Some of the words they were asked to spell included: axis, stylish and creatures.


Seventh-grade participants were: Aiden Adamczyk, Anastasia Albornoz, Frankie Brophy, Keira Davis, Julia Frost, Matthew Hauber, Liam Holmes, Ethan Hidalgo, Wesley Mardyniak, Sophia Skinner, Josh Thibodeau, Josh Whitbeck and Kevin Wortmann.


They were asked to spell words like alabaster, garret and ruefully.  


Eighth-graders who participated were: Logan Barton, Marianna Ferdinandi, Daniela Hammonds, Peter Horoshak-Garcia, Christian Kelter, Trevor Luther,  Noah McGinnis, Enzo Reyes,  Elizabeth Skalski and Mario Vera. 


The words they were asked to spell included sumptuous, chloroform and wastrels.


"Spelling helps me write better because I know what the words mean," said Noah. "It also helps me write my essays."


 “Frippery,” the winning word, was his favorite.  


By the way, frippery, as a noun, is a showy or unnecessary ornament in architecture, dress or language. 


“This spelling bee went back and forth for a very long time,” added Ms. Spicehandler. “Noah was absolutely elated that he won.”