Spelling Bee Participants. Image via The National Spelling Bee

The Sports Commission for the State of Maryland wants your school to join in on the next statewide spelling bee competition.

The commission is now serving as the official spelling bee sponsor for the Scripps National Spelling Bee program across 10 counties plus the City of Annapolis. The competition is held in National Harbor each spring and broadcast on ESPN.

This year, the state sports commission is actively recruiting schools and homeschoolers to show statewide support for the competition, and to engage more Maryland kids in an academic event with a potential national stage.

Students must first compete in a school-level bee to qualify for the Maryland Sports Spelling Bee. All kids from kindergarten through eighth grade are invited to compete, and individuals schools are encouraged to set up their own spelling bees to qualify their students for the national level. The winner from any school that enrolls with the national office is automatically enrolled in the state competition; the winner of that level goes on to compete in the Scripps National Spelling Bee.

All schools from Allegany, Caroline, Carroll, Cecil, Garrett, Harford, Kent, Queen Anne’s, St. Mary’s and Talbot counties, along with the City of Annapolis, are eligible for enrollment in the Maryland Sports Spelling Bee. Baltimore has a separate sponsor, The Baltimore Bee, which registers Baltimore City School spelling bees under the umbrella of the national competition.

A Tuesday press release from the Maryland Sports Spelling Bee said that “in addition to improving students’ spelling skills and increasing their vocabularies, spelling bee participation provides valuable experience in developing poise, a necessary skill for success in public speaking, performing arts and athletics.”

The National Spelling Bee is a time-honored tradition. This year’s competition will mark the event’s 90th year.

For more information on early bird registration for your school or homeschooler, or to enroll your school, click here.

Rachel Bone

Rachel Bone is a regular contributor to the Baltimore Fishbowl.