TWO THURROCK students were among twelve talented young students have won a place in a national final after demonstrating their language skills at the Routes into Languages East Foreign Languages Spelling Bee.
The competition has captured the imagination of over 40 schools across the East of England, with around 4,800 Year 7 pupils battling it out to spell the highest number of words in French, German or Spanish.
Stanley Stefanowski from Chafford Hundred School came third in the German section while Steven Veizi from Gateway Academy came fourth in the Spanish section.
Nearly 100 local winners – who had won class and school rounds of the competition – have just taken part in the regional final, at Comberton Village College near Cambridge. The pupils had to learn 150 words for the regional final and they then had one minute to translate and correctly spell a random list of words in their chosen language.
Project Manager Sarah Schechter, from Anglia Ruskin University, said: “The competition has given the pupils the opportunity to learn the vocabulary that they need to know in order to improve their language competence.
“The wonderful aspect of the project is that it attracts and motivates a broad cross-section of pupils, not necessarily just the gifted and talented ones. Learning foreign language vocabulary can be pretty tough, but the competition element captures the imagination of the pupils.”
The winners of this year’s regional competition were – German: 1st Jack Wells, Thomas Lord Audley School, Colchester, Essex; 2nd Anny Bush, Thomas Lord Audley School, Essex; 3rd Stanley Stefanowski, Chafford Hundred School, Thurrock, Essex; 4th Michael Barrenger, Colne Community School, Essex.
French: 1st Helen Grant, Linton Village College, Cambridgeshire; 2nd Sophie Kennedy, Yavneh College, Borehamwood, Hertfordshire; 3rd Leanne Harris, Yavneh College, Borehamwood, Hertfordshire; 4th Olivia Haste, Linton Village College, Cambridgeshire.
Spanish: 1st Fizza Arshad, Southend High School for Girls, Essex; 2nd Ewan Jenkins, Comberton Village College, Cambridgeshire; 3rd Edward Shelley, Comberton Village College, Cambridgeshire; 4th, Steven Veizi, Gateway Academy, Tilbury, Essex.
They all received shields and certificates, with the winners being presented with a cup for their school and a foreign language dictionary donated by Oxford University Press. The national final, which will take place in Cambridge in July, will see the 12 regional winners competing against pupils from across the country.