HCLS Spelling Bee
As a part of A+ Partners in Education, Howard County Library System (HCLS) invites public and private schools, as well as home school associations, to participate in the HCLS Spelling Bee, a countywide bee for students in grades four through eight. The HCLS Spelling Bee is registered with Scripps National as an official regional bee. The winners of individual school bees held in the fall and winter compete in the HCLS Spelling Bee in March. The champion advances to the National Spelling Bee in Washington, DC.
The HCLS Spelling Bee is sponsored by BB&T and the Friends of Howard County Library, and organized under the rules of the Scripps National Spelling Bee
Spelling bees improve students' spelling, increase their vocabularies, and develop correct English usage.
- Students improve their spelling, increase their vocabularies, learn concepts, and develop correct English. As a result, they read and write more effectively and score higher on standardized tests and college prep tests and beyond. The impact lasts a lifetime.
- Students learn word etymology and country of origin, the meanings of prefixes and suffixes, and spelling rules.
- By studying words grouped in thematic categories, spellers not only acquire knowledge but also develop cognitive skills and increased understanding of ideas and values.
- Students of all ages and background participate on an equal, competitive basis.
- Spelling bees improve spelling and spark interest among the students.
- Spelling bees create friendly, sportsmanlike rivalry among the schools.
Spelling bees progression is as follows:
Level 1: Classroom Spelling Bees are held
Level 2: Level 1 winners compete in school or home school association spelling bees
Level 3: Level 2 winners compete in the HCLS Spelling Bee
Level 4: The Level 3 champion competes in the National Spelling Bee in Washington, DC
Levels 1 and 2 winners are determined by the entity holding the bee. A panel of judges selected by HCLS determines the winner of Level 3.
- September 30, 2013: Deadline for schools to register with HCLS
- November 1, 2013 – January 24, 2014: Levels 1 and 2 spelling bees (classroom, school and home school association)
- March 7, 2014: HCLS Spelling Bee at Reservoir High School
- Late May/Early June 2014: National Spelling Bee in Washington, DC
Prizes for Levels 1 and 2 bees are determined and awarded by the organizing entity.
Prizes for the HCLS Spelling Bee are awarded by HCLS the evening of the competition:
- All contestants and alternates receive certificates of participation.
- The first place winner receives a trophy (as does his/her school), a $1,000 college scholarship, and the opportunity to represent Howard County in the National Spelling Bee, all expenses paid.
- The second place winner receives a trophy (as does his/her school), a $750 college scholarship, and the opportunity to represent Howard County in the National Spelling Bee, all expenses paid, should the winner be unable to compete.
Information for Contestants and Alternates
Frequently Asked Questions
Interested schools and home school associations should fill out the Intent to Participate form by September 30.
Information for school/association spelling bee coordinators is available in the Coordinator's Handbook (PDF).
The 2014 HCLS BumbleBee Celebration takes place Monday, March 3 at HCLS's Miller Branch. A companion to the HCLS Spelling Bee, the BumbleBee inspires first through third grade students to build vocabularies, learn spelling tips, and gain confidence in front of an audience.
If you have questions, please contact:
Howard County Library System
6600 Cradlerock Way
Columbia, MD 21045
TTY Phone: 410.313.7740
Sponsored by BB&T, Friends of Howard County Library, and the Josephine B. Scheffenacker Education Trust.