Spelling Bee Not Just About Spelling This Year

WASHINGTON (April 9, 2013)—It will take more than spelling to win this year's National Spelling Bee because competitors will have to know some definitions as well.

For the first time, vocabulary will be a part of the Scripps National Spelling Bee when the competition is held next month near the nation's capital.

The spellers will still take part in the traditional on-stage spelling rounds with the familiar bell, but they'll also take multiple-choice vocabulary tests to help determine the semifinalists and the finalists.

The final rounds will look the same, as spellers are eliminated until there's a champion.

Bee Executive Director Paige Kimble says the changes help reinforce the purpose of the bee, which is to encourage students to broaden their knowledge of the English language.

This year's bee takes is May 28 to May 30.

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