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Dec 5, 2012

All today’s buzz was at the Spelling BEE

The winners of the Spelling Bee for the Hearing Impaired took it all; and they hail from the Cayo Deaf Institute. This morning Wilford Coc and Jacob Chun won the first and second places in the competition at the Belize Elementary School Auditorium. The annual event has grown by leaps and bounds over the years providing the children with hearing disabilities with the chance to compete in a unique event. Duane Moody was on hand for the competition.


Duane Moody, Reporting

It was the seventeenth edition of the Crystal Spelling Bee for the Hearing Impaired. The national event provides primary school level students with impaired hearings with the opportunity to compete in several rounds of spelling competition. The competition is held annually in December as a part of Disability Week, says Sharon August, Manager of the National Resource Center for Inclusive Education (NARCIE). This year a total of nine schools competed in the competition.


Sharon August

Sharon August, Manager, NARCIE

“We select the words, we create a DVD and a booklet to send to the schools and to assist the parents in helping the students to study. We give the books and DVD to every school that have students who are deaf and that will be competing and they study with the students for about four months and they come to the competition and we have a lot of fun watching them compete and winning great prizes from Bowen and Bowen. These students are intelligent children; the only thing is that they are deaf or they might be hard of hearing which means is that they have a level of hearing loss but they are not completely deaf. So they can learn like any other children once they have the sign language for the teachers to be able to communicate with them and teach them the content.”


And after this morning’s first leg of competition among five junior students, nine year Wilford Coc and eight year old Jacob Chun—both of the Cayo Deaf Institute—took first and second place respectively as Spelling Bee’s Top spellers. Their teacher, Marvin Dueck, says that they took two months to learn the two hundred and thirty-seven words and prepare for the competition.


Marvin Dueck, Teacher, Cayo Deaf Institute

“It feels exciting to see my boys win. I think god gave them the strength to do it.”


Alfonso Noble, Wave

Marvin Dueck

“How long did it take for you guys to get them ready?”


Marvin Dueck

“About two months.”


From trophies to medals, dictionaries, games and more; the prizes have become more attractive over the years.


Jason Solis, Crystal Brand Coordinator, Bowen & Bowen Ltd.

“First place winners for the juniors and seniors get kindle HD tablets. Second place gets new bicycles. Everyone gets sign languages dictionaries—that’s first, second and third—and all the participants get dictionaries. And we have a host of education games that everyone will partake in. so they get really great gifts.”


Since 2001, Bowen and Bowen Limited has been the main corporate sponsor for the spelling bee competition and according to Crystal Brand Coordinator, Jason Solis; the event is unique and brings awareness to the students.


Jason Solis

Jason Solis

“It brings them together for an opportunity to socialize. I mean there are kids from every district here and it is an opportunity for them to come together and support each other.  Because it is such a unique event, there are certain challenges that come with it, but in terms of what you learn from it, it is really a great experience because you learn new ways to communicate; you learn how people in Belize that are hearing impaired communicate and the challenges that they have. So hats off to the kids to study and come on such a stage and perform at such a level.”


Duane Moody

“And indeed it was a learning experience for everyone who attended the event; including myself. Duane Moody for News Five.”


In the senior competition; first place was won by Omica Chan from Toledo, while Yoselin Manzanero and Franklin Zetina, both of the Cayo District, took second and third places respectively.

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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3 Responses for “All today’s buzz was at the Spelling BEE”

  1. Storm says:

    Sounds like a great program, worthy of public support.

  2. jimmy says:

    Storm, can you just STFU?

  3. Storm says:

    @Jimmy, thanks for your concern! I can, but I don’t plan to. Have a great day!

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