How I trained my Year 7’s for the Spelling Bee – Miss Lisa Roberts, Ysgol Bryn Eilian

Pupils in my Year 7 German class were so excited about the Spelling Bee Competition! We began by going through the words on the sheet and each pupil was given their own words sheet and a guide sheet for pronouncing the alphabet accurately. If pupils were still keen to participate after seeing the challenge that lay ahead they were allocated Spelling Bee Coaches! Pupils in Year 9 and year 12 volunteered to coach a pair or small group of Year 7’s after school, during lunchtime or during morning registration – it was the competitors responsibility to organise what best suited them and their Spelling Bee Coach! Pupils responded really well to this and enjoyed having an older pupil to work with.

One boy in Year 9 was particularly keen and developed games and quizzes to help pupils learn words in a more fun way. Once the words had been posted as a power point on the CiLT Cymru website, I printed them off as a hand-out on colour card, laminated them and cut them up to make a pack of 50 cards from which pupils could revise and practise the words and be tested on them.

The Word Cards are also very useful for when it comes to the competition! This made it very easy to randomly select the words that pupils should spell and cards were easy to keep track of in piles of ‘correct’ and ‘incorrect’ so that scoring could be confirmed as correct. During the competition Year 12 pupils came along to be ‘judges’ and each took notes on the spelling and pronunciation of the words to check that each competitor was scored accurately.
Pupils are already looking forward to Stage 2 of the competition and want their own packs of cards to practise with and ask friend and family to test them more easily.