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What Does Race Have to Do with the Spelling Bee?

It’s #NationalSpellingBee time! Tonight, two winners prevailed over the 285 contestants who sought to become national speller-in-chief. Congratulations to Vanya Shivashankar, 13, of Olathe, Kansas, and Gokul Venkatachalam, 14, of Chesterfield, Missouri, who are dual champions in the 88th annual National Scripps Spelling Bee. 420 more words


Here's a Theory About Why South Asian-Americans Totally Rule the Spelling Bee

South Asian-Americans, whose forebears immigrated from countries like India or Pakistan, have now won the Scripps National Spelling Bee eight years in a row. At one point in the 2015 final, six of the remaining seven spellers were of that ethnicity, and in the end there were two: co-champions Vanya Shivashankar and Gokul Venkatachalam. 1,224 more words

The Scripps National Spelling Bee Has Co-Champions, Again

In a dramatic, flawless final round, two eighth-graders proved to be joint winners at the 2015 Scripps National Spelling Bee. One a girl and one a boy, one from Kansas and one from Missouri, one a five-time finalist and one a four-timer, 13-year-old Vanya Shivashankar and 14-year-old Gokul Venkatachalam put both their hands on the trophy and thrust it into the air on Thursday evening—after spelling word after word that few people could even hope to pronounce correctly. 584 more words

Scripps National Spelling Bee ends in a tie for second straight year

It came down to the wire in the 2015 Scripps National Spelling Bee between Gokul Venkatachalam and Vanya Shivashankar, but neither of them seemed to even notice the mounting pressure. 163 more words


For the second year running, National Spelling bee ends in a tie

The bee never ended in a tie in its 52 years history before last year. Now it’s happened for the second year running.

Gokul Venkatachalam and Vanya Shivashankar has just made this history. 22 more words


Drake name-dropped in an example sentence in the National Spelling Bee

Drake may have finally achieved peak cultural relevance:

On Thursday night at the Scripps National Spelling Bee, one of the officials said that Drake “has a rap” in which every verse begins and ends with a word of Latin origin in an example sentence. 63 more words


Watch this National Spelling Bee kid spell a 45-letter word with ease

The kids at the National Spelling Bee are incredible, and know words you’ll definitely never need. We asked them to tell us the hardest words they can spell, and one gave us a response that was 45 letters long.