Three-time winner in Smithfield District Spelling Bee

Three-time winner in Smithfield District Spelling Bee

Sixth-grader Anna Costello, from Gallagher Middle School, becomes the Smithfield district winner, spelling the word “lunatic,” during the Smithfield District Spelling Bee at Raymond LaPerche Elementary School last Thursday. She will compete in the state finals in March. (Breeze photos by Charles Lawrence)

SMITHFIELD – Completing a hat trick, Anna Costello, a Gallagher Middle School 6th-grader, won the Smithfield School District Spelling Bee for the third year in a row last Thursday after correctly spelling “lunatic.”

Pronouncer and LaPerche Elementary School Principal Julie Dorsey read each word followed by its use in a sentence to 10 Smithfield students in grades 4-8 on Feb. 8 in the LaPerche cafeteria.

Costello nodded sharply each time she heard a word, and confidently spelled 23 words, including “necessary,” “nightingale,” “alfalfa,” “wanderlust,” and “retrospective.” She only seemed to struggle once, with a long pause between the first “i” and “r” in “prairie,” but she then quickly rattled off the remaining letters.

Costello will now represent Smithfield in the Rhode Island State Spelling Bee, sponsored by The Valley Breeze, starting at 10 a.m. on March 17 at the Lincoln Middle School.

Going 22 rounds, runner-up Benjamin Corriveau, an 8th-grader also from Gallagher, spelled 21 words correctly, including “tundra,” “magnolia,” “filament,” and “gunnysack.”

He asked for the definition of a word twice. The first time came in the 10th round with the word “jute,” a fibrous plant used to make strong threads, which he spelled correctly. In the 22nd round, he asked for the definition of “hominy,” ground corn used to make grits, and misspelled the word, replacing “y” with “ee.” He will take Costello's place in the statewide spelling bee should she not be able to attend.

The words, “frolic,” “academy,” “macaroni," “bungalow” and “futon” caused half the competition to miss the mark.

Other participants in the Smithfield District Spelling Bee included:

• 4th grade: Saidamirhon Rahimov (Laperche), Molly Colantonio (Old County Road), Christian Snowman (Winsor) and Raj Murthy (Winsor).

• 5th grade: Jack Menard (LaPerche), Elena Kristidhi (McCabe), Sawyer Pwell (McCabe) and Ava Jarret (Old County Road).

Raj Murthy, a 4th-grader at Winsor Elementary School in Smithfield, thinks carefully as he spells his given word during the 2018 Smithfield District Spelling Bee held at Raymond LaPerche Elementary School last Thursday.
Fourth-grader Molly Colantonio, from Old County Road Elementary, and 5th-grader Sawyer Powell, from McCabe Elementary, wait their turn.
The winners from Smithfield elementary and middle schools show their certificates for achieving excellence as a finalist in the 2018 Smithfield District Spelling Bee. From left are Raj Murthy, Christian Snowman, Ava Jarret, Molly Colantonio, Sawyer Powell, Elena Kristidhi, Saidamirhon Rahimov, Jack Menard, Anna Costello and Benjamin Corriveau. Winning students from McCabe, Old County Road, LaPerche, and Winsor Elementary Schools and Gallagher Middle School competed to be the district winner and go to the state finals in March.