WMS 5th/6th Grade Spelling Bee celebrates spellers

WORTHINGTON - The 12 top fifth- and sixth-grade spellers at Worthington Middle School put their brains to the test Feb. 21 in the school's annual spelling bee.

Worthington Middle School 5th/6th Grade Spelling Bee participants include, front (from left): Austin Kinser, Keyon Xanaxay, Alex Reum, Lexi Reum, Mykala Phouangphet. Back: Thomas Anguiano, Ye Khing, Isaac Kinser, Gilberto Lopez Martin, Mary Dykema, Claire Spartz. (Submitted photo)

WORTHINGTON – The 12 top fifth- and sixth-grade spellers at Worthington Middle School put their brains to the test Feb. 21 in the school’s annual spelling bee.


Through six rounds, the ultimate top two - champion Isaac Kinser and runner-up Thomas Anguiano - were perfect, nailing each word that came their way from pronouncers and bee coordinators Paula Wolyniec and Hollie Hibma.


“Albeit,” “grandeur,” “epoch,” “banter,” “skewer,” “fluency” and more were tossed at the students, who gamely took their turns at the podium, often using pencil and paper to check their hunches before offering up their version, letter by letter.



From relatively easy words like “watermelon” to the trickier, such as “slovenly” and “obfuscate,” the students worked their way down to a team of five plus one alternate. Those scholars will represent WMS at the Southwest Minnesota Spelling Bee at Westbrook-Walnut Grove Elementary School in Walnut Grove on April 6.


And in case you thought you were smarter than a sixth-grader, keep in mind that Isaac Kinser clinched the championship by correctly spelling “ukulele” and “prescient.”


Phyllis Brink and Kathy Miller served as spelling judges for the contest.


The 2019 WMS 5th/6th grade spelling team includes: Isaac Kinser (first place); Thomas Anguiano (second place); Mykayla Phouangphet (third place); Mary Dykema (fourth place); Gilberto Lopez Martin (fifth place); and Austin Kinser (alternate).



Other participants in the 2019 WMS bee were Dwayne Bouakham, Ye Khing, Alex Reum, Lexi Reum, Claire Spartz and Keyon Xanaxay.

Top spelling bee finishers are (from left) Isaac Kinser, first place; Thomas Anguiano, second; Mykala Phouangphet, third; Mary Dykema, fourth; Gilberto Lopez Martin, fifth; and Austin Kinser, alternate. (Submitted photo)

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