Kerry-Ann Hepburn, Children's Own Coordinator
OCHO RIOS, St Ann:AFTER A large turnout in St Mary in the morning, St Ann was not to be outdone with a whopping 60 spellers who were present at the St John's Anglican Church Hall last week Wednesday afternoon.
This spelldown was the most exciting, with everyone on edge, waiting to see who would emerge winner.
There were strong ones and not so strong ones throughout the rounds. By the first break, there were 15 spellers.
The remaining spellers were being careful to not be the one to leave the competition. They pronounced, spelled, and misspelled, with one goal in sight.
There was camaraderie among some of the spellers and that is rare with competitors from different schools. A few among the top 10 were seen high-fiving each other after correctly spelling their word.
But there could only be one winner and it was in the form of 11-year-old first timer Sydonie Bell of Tomlinson Christian Academy, who battled her teammate, Sowande Brown to become the 2013 parish champion for St Ann.
Sowande, who entered in 2012, was upset that he did not win, but was still proud of his placement.
Brown, who is also an athlete, plans to go back to the drawing board.
Coach Meleitha Green told The Gleaner that she was elated and excited. "Words cannot explain how I feel."
"I feel very happy," Sydonie said as she acknowledged her success.
"Spelling has not only helped me in my schoolwork, it has expanded my vocabulary so I am able to use more words in my writing."
Sydonnie is an all-rounder. She enjoys drawing, dancing and singing. She participated in her school's talent show, Tomlinson's Got Talent, and she placed third.
1 Sydonie Bell, Tomlinson Christian Academy.
2 Sowande Brown, Tomlinson Christian Academy.
3 Kimone Christopher, Charlton Primary School.
4 Jazmin Holness, Hampton Preparatory School.
5 Jonathan Millwood, Mar-Jam School.
Sowande Brown, Tomlinson Christian Academy.