In a bid to enable school students to test and improve their spelling skills and cultivate a healthy competitive spirit, the Navhind Times in partnership with the Event Management department of S S Dempo College of Commerce and Economics organised Spell-Bee 2018. To ensure everyone who was interested got an opportunity to participate; applications were invited not just from schools but individuals as well.

Standard V, VI and VII students were grouped under the junior category and standard VIII, IX and X students in the senior category. The first two rounds were held in both north as well as south Goa; in S S Dempo College, Cujira and Damodar English Vidhyalaya respectively.

In the first round which was the written round held on September 20 and 21, 370 students in total participated. The written test included choosing the right spelling, meanings and a crossword. The 45-minute paper was not easy as mentioned by some students and participants were marked not just on their score but also the time taken to answer the paper. 60 students from north and 60 students from south were shortlisted for the next round which was the elimination round.

The elimination round was again held at the venues mentioned above and participants put up a tough fight to make it to the finale. The buzz as students registered for the round was simply infectious. Not just participants but even teachers and accompanying parents were excited as the round was to begin.

Each student was given 5 words to spell based on their class. This not only ensured that words were given according to the general age but also that no two students got the same word. There were ties in both categories in the north as well as the south and finally after the tie-breaker rounds, 10 students from the north and 10 students from the south in each category were shortlisted. A total of 40 students have made it to the finale and the excitement is building up!

The two rounds at both venues were conducted by, associate professor, English, St Xavier’s College, Mapusa, Sunita Mesquita and associate professor, English, S S Dempo College of Commerce and Economics, Cujira, Augusto Pinto. “The competition gave a boost to the confidence and esteem of children who participated. I felt they were the ones who love reading. Thus compared to the other children they not only had excellent vocabulary but their pronunciation, grammar and general knowledge was good too,” said Pinto.

Delta Technologies, Faber Castel, Carasid, Monginis and Real Drinks were the sponsors for the competition.

The finale which is slated for Friday, October 5 will be held at Dempo House in Panaji from 9.30 a.m. onwards and all are invited.