Ask An Italian: Dyslexia In Italian And English

When “ghost” is pronounced “fish” — a problem for dyslexics

The language where people live makes the greatest difference. “English, with its notoriously fickle spelling, may be the most daunting.” Italy, with a different language, has “only half the incidence [of dyslexia] found in the United States, where an estimated 5 to 15 percent of the population may have it to some degree.”

[Italics_Magazine; Rome,_IT; 2020-02-14]

South Plainfield Fourth and Fifth Graders Compete in 6th Annual Spelling Bee

A total of 19 South Plainfield students put their knowledge of the English language to the test on Feb. 5 in the borough’s 6th Annual Spelling Bee.

This year’s contestants correctly spelled over 100 grade-appropriate words, including but not limited to, lonesome, Pennsylvania, grasshopper, scribe, understand, macaroni, automobile, eighteen, landscape, describe, loneliness, televise, defroster, and permanent. Trickier words, such as tactics, aardvark, camouflage, receipt, and spaghetti also came into play and, in the end, Aryan took first place, correctly spelling of both rabble and acquainted.

[Tap_Into; New_Providence,_NJ,_US; 2020-02-14]

Rei wins North Smithfield Spelling Bee

After three years as a finalist, 8th-grader Gracie Rei has claimed the title of North Smithfield Spelling Bee Champion.

The bee went on for 11 rounds, and students were asked to spell many difficult words, including regulatory, structural and contemplate. Rei placed first after correctly spelling discrepancy and attainment. Boutelle is the runner up.

[Valley_Breeze,_The; Lincoln,_RI,_US; 2020-02-12]

Elementary Students Ready For County Spelling Bee

Fairfield Elementary fourth-grader Christian Moy says some of the words for the spelling bee are "out of this world."

Christian says he’s excited to compete in the Allen County Bee, but he wonders if the amount of time going into it is worth it for him. “Here’s the truth, yeah I am excited but I don’t know if it’s ever worth it. ‘Cause, like, I practice spelling a lot. But, practice makes perfect.”

[WBOI; Fort_Wayne,_IN,_US; 2020-02-12]

On spelling bee contest!

Spelling is crucial in helping students improve reading skills, expand vocabularies and build English skills.

It is clear that teaching methods in our classrooms at primary levels are handicapping a large percentage of students and these require greater investment. Without early childhood development programmes, low quality teaching practices and poor school management, a significant number of students will be left behind as they grow older.

[Point,_The; Banjul,_GM; 2020-02-11]

How dyspraxia changed young writer’s life

According to the NHS, dyslexia is a learning difficulty that can cause problems with a person’s reading, writing and spelling.

Fermanagh native Kylie Noble (25) was diagnosed with both dyslexia and dyspraxia at the age of 21 whilst she was studying a masters in journalism at the University of Sheffield. Also working as a freelance journalist at the time, Kylie explained that her diagnoses came as a shock.

[Impartial_Reporter,_The; High_Wycombe,_UK; 2020-02-10]

11 reasons why the English language is difficult to learn

The English language has a lot of weird spelling, grammar, and pronunciation rules.

Words that look the same can be pronounced differently, and words that sounds the same can be spelled differently. Some letters are silent altogether. And tricks like "I before E except after C" don't always apply.

[Microsoft_News; Redmond,_WA,_US; 2020-02-10]

Primary schools: Everything you need to know

Your guide to the different stages of primary education in England, including performance tables and assessment.

Primary schools generally cater for pupils aged from 4 to 11 years old. In the UK state school system, children begin in the Reception class before moving through from Year 1 to Year 6, when they take assessments known as Sats.

[TES; London,_UK; 2020-02-10]

SS3 pupil wins spelling Bee

Fourteen year-old Ifeoluwa Ademuwa, an SS3 student of Chrisfield College has won the first prize of MTN Nigeria kid-CEO spelling B competition.

Ademuwa competed against over 1,400 students across Lagos State to become the overall winner. Seventy schools across the state fielded their best to compete with their mates from various locales in Lagos.

[Nation,_The; Lagos,_NG; 2020-02-09]

Test Your Kid’s Vocabulary By Playing These Mind Games

Ranging from board games to mobile apps and online games, here are some mind games you can use to test your kid’s vocabulary.

Especially as a second language, not all kids find it easy to learn English. English might be one of the easiest languages to learn, but still, there are so many rules to grasp before one can fully be able to write and speak fluently. Additionally, there are thousands of rare words that are not necessarily used in everyday communication, yet they’re equally important when learning English.

[Cornwall_Seeker,_The; Cornwall,_ON,_CA; 2020-02-07]


Otto English takes us on a journey through the history of the English language, the exceptionalism of Empire and the furious and curious of Twitter.

I’m a big fan of my mother tongue. I love its peculiarities, its barking mad spelling, glorious vocabulary, poetry and quirks. I taught it as a foreign language for some years and became obsessed with etymology and those bits in the grammar where there’s no real logic but it’s just the way it is because it ‘sounds better’. The English language is one of our islands’ great creations.

[Byline_Times; London,_UK; 2020-02-06]

This African champ spells success e-m-p-a-n-o-p-l-y

The Scripps National Spelling Bee seems like the quintessential American tradition. But like so many parts of life in the U.S., if you look a little closer, there’s an international story to be told – one letter at a time.

“The image of Africa lots of people in America grow up with is hungry, skinny kids with flies stuck to their faces, and then we show up with kids who can compete with the best spellers in the world,” she says. “That changes minds.”

[Christian_Science_Monitor,_The; Boston,_MA,_US; 2020-02-06]

Garland ISD celebrates the 2020 Spelling Bee English and Spanish winners

This year’s Garland ISD Spelling Bee featured fierce competitors, proud parents, and four first-place winners.

The number of winners isn’t a sign of a tie, but the result of a new Garland ISD competition. For the first time in district history, GISD hosted both an English and Spanish Spelling Bee in January.

[North_Dallas_Gazette; Dallas,_TX,_US; 2020-02-06]

Nigeria: Spelling Bee - Saving Young Nigerians' Ailing Grammar Skills

Uchechukwu Nnaike highlights the impact of spelling competitions on the performance of students, especially in terms of reversing the trend of poor grammar among youths.

With more than 86 million young Nigerians below the age of 15, these young ones account for a staggering 45 per cent of the over 203 million population. Accordingly, primary school enrollment has increased in recent years, however, net attendance is only about 70 per cent. This means that there are more than 10.5 million out-of-school children- the world's highest number.

[All_Africa; Washington,_DC,_US; 2020-02-05]

Put-in-Bay student wins county spelling bee

This year, the county’s top speller not only emerged from one of its smallest schools, but also overcame any barriers that come along with learning English as a second language.

English being a second language for Michael did not stop him from spelling each and every word put in front of him correctly on Tuesday night, a streak that earned him the first-place victory at the Ottawa County Spelling Bee.

[Port_Clinton_News_Herald; Fremont,_OH,_US; 2020-02-05]

Spelling Bee returns with 5th season

Spelling Bee is back.

Russell T Ahmed, CEO of Champs21.com, said, “Bringing back spelling bee makes me very hopeful and optimistic that we will be able to not only teach our students to be better spellers but also help them become leaders of tomorrow.”

[Daily_Star,_The; Dhaka,_BD; 2020-02-03]

Why Is “Airplane” Also Spelled “Aeroplane”?

The spelling differences go beyond the invention of the airplane.

“British English has a general tendency to favo(u)r spellings and words that are reminiscent of French, whereas American English, when it has deviated from what British English does, often changes in the direction of seeming less French.”

[Reader's_Digest; New_York,_NY,_US; 2020-02-03]

MAPS hosts district spelling bee

More than 30 students from grades fifth through eighth squared off against one another.

The standard Scripps spelling bee rules were used for the competition. Organizers say it helps the students increase their vocabularies, learn correct English usage and encourage friendly competition.

[WLUC; Negaunee,_MI,_US; 2020-02-03]

Lithuania needs to accept life with English language, change law – linguists

Lithuania's Law on State Language needs to be amended and adapted to the existing reality, linguists say, adding that the state needs to learn side-by-side with the English language.

25 yeas ago, on Jan 31, 1995, the existing Law on State Language was adopted which has been in force ever since. It states that the Lithuanian language is the only state language in Lithuanian and must be used at state and municipal institutions, in officials documents, films should be translated in to the stated language or have Lithuanian subtitles etc.

[Baltic_Times,_The; Riga,_LV; 2020-01-31]

Burnley primary school children brush up on their maths and English skills

Pupils from a Burnley primary school have been brushing up on their maths and English in the form of a 'Spelling Bee' and 'Able Maths' workshop.

The children from Springfield Community Primary School in Burnley Wood took part in a Spelling Bee to decide who would represent will be for a cross school competition. Meanwhile, Springfield pupils took part in an ‘Able Maths’ workshop at Christ The King RC Primary School.

[Burnley_Express; Burnley,_UK; 2020-01-30]

The word columnist offers a mea culpa

I have been writing “In a Word” for almost two years, and I have made mistakes. To the readers who have written in when I have erred: This is for you.

The Wall Street Journal, for example, once alerted its readers that it had mistakenly referred to pop star Britney Spears as “Briney Spear.” Brazilian newsmagazine Veja emended its profile of a politician: “The candidate likes to spend his free time reading Tolstoy, and not watching ‘Toy Story,’ as originally reported.”

[Christian_Science_Monitor,_The; Boston,_MA,_US; 2020-01-30]

Sam Coleman wins WJHS Spelling Bee

Wells Junior High School eighth grade student Sam Coleman emerged the top speller in this year’s Wells Junior High School Spelling Bee held Jan. 15.

[Sea_Coast_Online; Portsmouth,_NH,_US; 2020-01-30]

UMFK to host regional round for National Spelling Bee

“We are very pleased to be hosting this event on our campus again this year.” said UMFK Dean of Community Education, Scott Voisine. “This spelling bee is an event that celebrates academic achievement and provides young people the opportunity to hone skills that will benefit them for a lifetime.”

[WAGM; Fort_Kent,_ME,_US; 2020-01-30]

Jonesville student wins county spelling bee

Jonesville sixth-grader Gibson Vestal claimed the victory and will go on to compete in the regional spelling bee in March.

“The purpose of the spelling bee is to help students improve their spelling, increase their vocabularies, learn concepts and develop correct English usage that will help them all their lives. It also helps students to speak publicly in front of an audience.”

[Yadkin_Ripple,_The; Yadkinville,_NC,_US; 2020-01-29]

Kingston 5th-grader spells 'elaborate' to win county spelling bee

"I'll keep studying my list of words and flip through the dictionary," she said.

The Kingston Elementary fifth-grader was crowned the spelling champion of the county Friday morning at the 60th annual Bartow County Spelling Bee at the Clarence Brown Conference Center in Cartersville after representing her school in the contest last year as a fourth-grader.

[Daily_Tribune_News,_The; Cartersville,_GA,_US; 2020-01-28]

Academic confirms that the North East speaks ‘properly’

You have probably never taken issue with Daniel Jones, who became head of phonetics at University College London in 1912. But you might do.

He isn’t the perhaps the most obvious target for a 2020 polemic, but Professor Jones still manages to antagonise. He was the gentleman who more-or-less decided that accents, such as the faultless ones used by natives of the North East and elsewhere, were somehow “wrong”. He backed the idea of Received Pronunciation (RP), which essentially means speaking like Stephen Fry.

[Northumberland_Gazette; Alnwick,_UK; 2020-01-26]

Macrons and Wikipedia

The use of macrons in New Zealand English is changing fast.

Print and television media, local and central government, they have almost all adopted the macron to indicate long vowels in Māori.

[Scoop; Wellington,_NZ; 2020-01-26]

U.S. Embassy in Kazakhstan to hold fourth annual spelling bee

The United States Embassy in Nur-Sultan will hold its fourth annual spelling bee across the country during February and March.

“Local, national and regional bees are excellent opportunities to support education and to promote American English and American culture, to showcase the partnership between the United States and Central Asia and to build a strong regional network of spaces (American Corners),” according to the competition’s official guidelines.

[Astana_Times,_The; Astana,_KZ; 2020-01-24]

The Discontented Alphabet in Winter

When George Washington was a lad, he learned his alphabet, all twenty-seven letters.

When English was first written, though, it had twenty-four letters, not including several we know today, such as J or V or W. Because English was not Latin, when the English language was transliterated to the Latin alphabet, there were several sounds not represented, and as such, those founders of written English as we know it modified letters to represent sounds or they borrowed from the former alphabet that had represented English, the Futhorc system of runes. Thus English had letters that other languages did not. That caused problems several hundred years later. When the idea of movable-type printing first flowered in Europe, most of the printing was done in what we now call Germany by German people.

[Ricochet; Los_Angeles,_CA,_US; 2020-01-23]

With ‘Duress,’ Millhopper Montessori Student Becomes Alachua County’s Spelling Champion

The bee’s purpose is to help the students improve their spelling, increase their vocabulary and develop English skills “that will help them all their lives.”

She said she had been practicing since early December. “I would just ask my family words, just use whatever words they could think of,” said Thelin, who turns 14 on Friday.

[WUFT; Gainesville,_FL,_US; 2020-01-23]

“Breath” and “breathe”

Words referring to the most basic functions of our organism.

The basic word here is the noun breath; it already existed in Old English and had long æ. The verb breathe is a later derivative of the same root; it also had a long vowel.

[OUP_Blog; Oxford,_UK; 2020-01-22]

PRMS hosts district Spelling Bee

The district spelling bee was held at Prairie River Middle School on Tuesday, January 14.

Schools represented were: Jefferson, Kate Goodrich, Maple Grove Charter School, PRMS, St. John Lutheran School, St. Francis Catholic School and Washington.

[Merrill_Foto_News; Merrill,_WI,_US; 2020-01-21]

Sahasra Deepika Foundation's annual Spelling Bee contest held

The last few months saw Class 9 student Sneha Somu diligently spending two hours after school to learn new words in English.

“My teacher KG Ravikumar taught us the pronunciation of 50 words every day. My parents and neighbours feel proud of me when I read spellings out loud. I’m glad that I could fulfil their expectations by coming first in the competition,” says Somu, whose father is a worker at a welding shop.

[New_Indian_Express,_The; New_Delhi,_IN; 2020-01-20]

Van Dyke wins CMS Spelling Bee

Seventh-grader Caleb Van Dyke distinguished himself as Catskill Middle School’s top speller by winning his school’s 2019 spelling bee.

[subscription] He and other students from grades 6 through 8 showed their mettle in this school-wide spelling showdown that took place Dec. 19 in the CMS auditorium. Sixth grader Lacy Soura and seventh grader Morgan Hurler were the co runners-up. As the winner, Caleb will represent Catskill Middle School at the 2020 Capital Region Spelling Bee held Feb. 4 at Proctor’s Theatre.

[Hudson_Valley_360; Hudson,_NY,_US; 2020-01-16]

Pacelli students advance to Regional Spelling Bee

Pacelli Catholic School has advanced two spellers to the Regional Spelling Bee.

The champion of the Southeast Minnesota Spelling Bee Final will win an expenses-paid trip (including one adult) to compete in the 2019-20 Scripps National Spelling Bee in Washington, DC, held at the end of May 2020. Pacelli’s Neha Thawani Nanda earned a trip to the 2018-19 National Spelling Bee in Washington, DC. The bee’s purpose is to help students improve their spelling, increase their vocabularies, learn concepts and develop correct English usage that will help them all their lives.

[Austin_Daily_Herald; Austin,_MN,_US; 2020-01-14]

How Many Words Are There in the English Language?

Of course, it's impossible to provide an exact number of words in English, since new words are being added to the dictionary, and falling out of use, pretty much constantly.

Dr. Adam Crowley, an associate professor of English at Husson University’s College of Science and Humanities, provides an approximate answer—and it’s surprisingly nice and even! “How many words are there in the English language? The short answer is: about a million,” he told RD.com.

[Reader's_Digest; New_York,_NY,_US; 2020-01-14]

For county Spelling Bee champions, experience pays off

Melody Harlan, in 6th grade at Auburn Middle School, won the 2020 Spelling Bee Saturday.

“Oh yeah, I was nervous,” she said after the competition. She and her mother, Tina Harlan, have spent countless hours writing out and reviewing flash cards over the past few years. “She’s had a great track record for setting the goal and then putting in the work to accomplish the goal,” said her father, Scott Harlan.

[Fauquier_Times; Warrenton,_VA,_US; 2020-01-13]

Speech-disrupting brain disease reflects patients' native tongue

Dementia-related language symptoms differ in Italian and English speakers, study finds.

English speakers had more trouble pronouncing words -- the traditional hallmark of nonfluent PPA -- and tended to speak less than usual. In contrast, Italian speakers with the same disorder had fewer pronunciation difficulties but tended to produce much shorter and grammatically simpler sentences. "We think this is specifically because the consonant clusters that are so common in English pose a challenge for a degenerating speech-planning system," said Gorno-Tempini, who directs the language neurobiology laboratory at the UCSF Memory and Aging Center, and is co-director of the UCSF Dyslexia Center and the recently launched UCSF-UC Berkeley Schwab Dyslexia and Cognitive Diversity Center. "In contrast, Italian is easier to pronounce, but has much more complex grammar, and this is how Italian speakers with PPA tend to run into trouble."

[EurekaAlert; New_York,_NY,_US; 2020-01-10]

Scripps National Spelling Bee Launches Word Club App

The app is available for free download on iOS and Android devices. It includes 50 study words and in-app purchase options for the remainder of the 4,000 words appearing in the 2020 edition of Words of the Champions, the official Bee study resource for school and regional spelling bee participants. "Spellers enjoy busy lives that involve far more than just spelling," said Paige Kimble, executive director of the Scripps National Spelling Bee. "The Word Club app gives them the freedom and flexibility to continue their word studies while on the go. The app's interactive play features will challenge their minds and motivate their competitive spirit."

[PR_Newswire; Chicago,_IL,_US; 2020-01-08]

Harrison County Spelling Bee leads to the national stage

One contestant, Ashley McBrayer, a 6th grader from Bridgeport Middle School, says she appreciates what spelling bee's [sic] do for her. "They get me out of my comfort zone. They help me in school, and get me to spell new words I've never heard before." She can even spell the longest word in the English dictionary: pneumonoultramicroscopicsilicovolcanoconiosis.

[WDTV; Bridgeport,_WV,_US; 2020-01-08]

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