Seventeen students from the Willow Bend Elementary Dual Language program and fourteen students from the Terra Vista Middle School Dual Language program competed for their spot on Frenship’s Spanish Spelling teams last Thursday.
During try-outs, each student was given a word to spell in Spanish. If they got that word correct, they would move on to the next round of words. If they got the word incorrect, they were eliminated. This process continued until there was one person left standing. The top six students formed the Spanish Spelling team plus one alternate.
The winning word for the Willow Bend students was “cortocircuito” and the winning word for the Terra Vista students was “penicilina.”
Senon Cruz, the District Coordinator of Bilingual and ESL, said that this will be the tenth year that students from Frenship compete at Texas Tech in the Spanish Spelling Bee.
“The event is under the Texas Tech University Sigma Delta Pi organization,” Cruz said. “Frenship will compete with many schools around the region including: Lubbock ISD, Lubbock Cooper ISD and more.”
Cruz said the students will practice after school for the next several weeks until they compete in November. Robert Nunez, Willow Bend Dual Language teacher, and Cristina Barragan, Terra Vista Dual Language teacher, will be coaching the students to prepare them for the competition.
“The competition is in November at the International Cultural Center at Texas Tech University,” Cruz said. “The actual date and time have not yet been determined. There is a possibility that the competition can be virtual.”
Cruz said being a part of this competition sets these students apart from their peers and provides them with exciting opportunities.
“What separates our students from their peers is that they have the gift of being bilingual and get the opportunity to try-out for the regular UIL spelling bee too, amongst being biliterate and bicultural,” Cruz said.
Willow Bend Spanish Spelling Team:
1st- Jesus Paredes (5th grade)
2nd- Sara Patino (5th grade)
3rd- Damian Gonzalez (5th grade)
4th- Alejandro Saenz (5th grade)
5th- America Gurrola (4th grade)
Alternate- Mariana Portillo (3rd grade)
Terra Vista Spanish Spelling Team:
1 Alma Diaz-Perez (6th grade)
2 Manuel Ramirez Hernandez (6th grade)
3 Edwin Reyes Villanueva (6th grade)
4 Danexsa Sanchez (6th grade)
5 Thomas Torres (7th grade)
Alternate- Efrain Casas (6th grade)