Brock Westgate, from Alstonville Public School, made it to the fourth round.
Brock Westgate, from Alstonville Public School, made it to the fourth round.

Alliteration stumps super speller

DON”T forget the extra ‘l’ when spelling ‘alliteration’.

Ten-year-old Brock Westgate made it to the fourth round of the Premier’s Spelling Bee in Sydney yesterday and then forgot the extra ‘l’.

He had correctly spelt ‘atoll’ before ‘alliteration.’

“I felt nervous, you stand up on your own, it’s pretty hard,” he said.

His favourite word was ‘rendezvous’ so it was no surprise that everyone said he was the best speller in the class, he told The Northern Star.

He plans to do the spelling bee again next year, which will please his teachers at Alstonville Public School.

Eleven-year-old Michael Krippner, made it to the final nine of the spelling bee until he misheard the word ‘pacifist’ and spelt it with a ‘v’.

“I was pretty nervous, there were about 200 people there,” Michael said.

He had to spell 10 words in the competition including ‘gingivitis’, ‘malicious’ and ‘acquiesce’.

He prepared for the spelling bee by practising his general knowledge and reading through the list of prepared words.

As state finalist, Michael received a medal and a Macquarie Dictionary.

With his father, Ross Krippner, he will stay on in Sydney for the presentation of a gold medal from the University of NSW for being the top Year 5 student in the state before returning home to Coopers Shoot.

The 2009 Premier’s Spelling Bee saw 70 students from across the state converge on the final to test their spelling skills.

A record 87,499 students signed up for the challenge this year but the winning speller was Lian Yang from Carlingford West Public School who correctly spelt the word ‘capricious’.

The Premier’s Spelling Bee started in 2004 as a fun way to engage primary school students in spelling. After regional finals, the state final is held every year at the ABC Centre in Sydney. Macquarie Dictionary is the official wordlist supplier.

Brock studied for two hours every day to learn the official 1600-word list but he loved every minute of the competition.

“It’s very exciting,” he said.



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