Conyers Middle School Principal Torian White, left, congratulates Conyers Middle seveth-grader Jordan Auld-Ellis, after he won the Rockdale County Spelling Bee on Friday. Auld-Ellis will represent Rockdale County at the regional Spelling Bee on March 1 at Mundy’s Mill Middle in Jonesboro. (Staff photo: Ryan McKenzie)
CONYERS — From words such as “mammalian” to “dawdle” to “imperious,” contestants at the Rockdale County Spelling Bee faced some linguistic challenges at Conyers Middle School on Friday morning.
Fourteen different Rockdale elementary and middle schools were represented as spellers displayed their phonetic skills to the judges. As Rockdale County Public Schools Language Arts Coordinator Chara Moore pronounced the words, contestants did their best to spell them.
Many spellers were eliminated in the first round, and the competition eventually dwindled down to two final contestants. Erik Edwards, a fourth-grader from Shoal Creek Elementary, and Jordan Auld-Ellis of Conyers Middle were remaining when Edwards misspelled “anticipatory.”
As per official Spelling Bee rules, when there are only two spellers left and one of them incorrectly spells a word, the other speller has an opportunity to correctly spell it. However, to be named the winner, the other speller must also correctly spell an additional word.
Seventh-grader Auld-Ellis was declared the RCPS Spelling Bee winner after accurately spelling “anticipatory” and then spelling “illustrious” correctly. Edwards will serve as the RCPS runner up in the case that Auld-Ellis is unable to make it to the regional Spelling Bee on March 1 at Mundy’s Mill Middle School in Jonesboro.
“It’s a word that I already knew how to spell,” Auld-Ellis admitted confidently when referring to the winning word “illustrious.”
This is the farthest that Auld-Ellis has made it in the Spelling Bee, and he stated that he is not nervous about going to the regional competition.