Inspiring children

2015-08-12 06:00
PHOTOS: Supplied

Tshegofatso Tseke and her  English teacher, Vusi Mbele  organised a ‘spelling bee’ at Adams College.

PHOTOS: Supplied Tshegofatso Tseke and her English teacher, Vusi Mbele organised a ‘spelling bee’ at Adams College.

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THE annual Fever Spelling Bee competition has inspired hundreds of pupils in the province to improve their English­ literacy skills.

Last year Adams College pupil, Tshegofatso Tseke did her school proud when she won the Durban and North Coast Spelling Bee competition and last Wednesday, Adams College hosted their first spelling bee.

Tshegofatso hopes it will become an annual tradition at the school.

“When I came first in Grade 11, it made me believe in myself.

“I motivated many of my fellow pupils and saw they were interested. My teacher, Mr Mbele and I then thought of a way of conducting our own spelling bee at the school for the lower grade pupils in preparation,” Tsegofatse said.

About 50 pupils entered and had to learn around 600 words.

Tshegofatso’s advice to them was to enjoy and “make sure before you spell that it is correct”.

Last year, judges commented that Tshegofatso was using rhythmic spelling and tapping with her feet, as in the movie Akele and the Bee.

Tshegofatso says she didn’t do it consciously, but her fellow pupils, who have also seen the movie, are also using this method.

“I am so excited because spelling bee equips children in English. I assisted Mr Mbele in organising the event, the setting up and motivating the pupils to learn. The spelling fever ran high and whenever I passed a class, I would see pupils­ learning the words,” said Tshegofatso.

Mbele said the competition is the first of its kind at the school and a step in the right direction.

“We need more initiatives like these. It truly helps pupils with their subjects across the board.

“I always felt our pupils speak English well, but are lacking when it comes to writing.

“New technology and using abbreviations also do not help the situation,” he said.

As the time for the competition arrived, the excitement around had the contestants and the audience captured in the moment.

The competition consisted of three rounds, with the top 10 and the top five announced in the last round.

The top five then competed by spelling from the list of about 20 bonus words, until the top three were determined.

Zinzi Dube became the uncontested winner, placing first in both the spelling bee and the bonus round

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