31 October 2017

The Year 9 Spelling Bee opened with an inspiring speech from Mr Halliwell explaining how all the advances that have ever been made since time began have been developed into whatever they are today, because of good communication and that good spelling is necessary for any communication to be effective.

The scores so far were on the board. The semi-final was held on Wednesday and it seemed as though Southwell, Barlow and Almond were the only houses in with a chance of emerging the victors. However, as has been shown in previous years, the placings can turn around quite dramatically depending on the strategy used by each team. Mrs Doolan congratulated all the orthographers on stage (introducing many of us to a new word) and the war of words commenced with Barlow House first up to the mic.

Quiz host, Mrs Taylor’s seemingly relentless lists of words lasted two minutes for each team and an enthusiastic audience had to be reminded of team tactics – quickly passing a tricky word meant that another word could be tried. … and some of them were quite tricky, but there was not a stutter as the super spellers rattled off the correct versions of words such as ‘akimbo’, ‘astringent’ and ‘catacomb’.

Eventually, the scores were in and, while final calculations were being made, the Last Man Standing Final was held. Earlier rounds of this competition had taken place on the previous Wednesday and the battle to be the best had been fierce, with Rees Abbott and Ethan Smith emerging as the two strongest spellers in the year group. They assuredly took their places in front of a tense Year 9 crowd, spelling like experts, until Rees stumbled on the not so easy word, ‘easel’.

Mr Dumican thanked all the staff and participants for all their efforts before announcing the final results and by Jove it was tight at the top! There was a tie for 4th place between Southwell and Mayne, both on 50 points, a tie for 2nd place between Almond and Ward, both on 52 points and, just pipping them all at the post, was Howard on 54 points. Another superb afternoon’s spelling had taken place and everyone felt as though they had earned the imminent half term break.





by Mrs Payne, Assistant Headteacher