By: Carol Beck-Round | Category: Education | Issue: May 2010
The Rogers County Literacy Council Spelling Bee champion team 2009 was a family effort. Literacy Council Executive Director Carol Round (left) and Council President Mike Gardner (right) congratulate Hayley Holmes (center from left) and her parents Randy and Marla with last year’s “To Bee or Not To Bee” spelling trophy. The spelling bee event raised nearly $2,000 for literacy programs in Rogers County.
Can you spell better than a fifth grader? Then get ready for the second Rogers County Literacy Council’s “To Bee or Not to Bee” Spelling Bee fundraiser, slated for Saturday, June 12 from 9 a.m. until noon at the Northeast Oklahoma Technology Center on Highway 88 in Claremore.
“Even if you aren’t a great speller, the event is fun and competitive and will help fund literacy efforts in Rogers County,” says RCLC Executive Director Carol Round. “We had teams representing the Rogers County Sheriff’s Department last year, as well as the commissioner’s office and area businesses who have said they will be participating again this year.”
Businesses, civic and church groups, organizations, and even family teams are encouraged to enter a three-person team in the bee. There are no age restrictions. Last year’s winner was a mother/father/daughter team. Team members are allowed to confer on the spelling of each word before giving their answer.
Multiple teams from the same company or organization are allowed. Once a team is registered, the word list will be sent to the team captain so members can begin studying for the competitive event. The entry fee is $100 with a June 9 deadline.
Participating in last year’s bee were The So-So Spellers, sponsored by Sheriff Scott Walton. From left are Jolene Willis, Donnie Chasteen and Shane Reynolds.
Team registration on the day of the event begins at 8:30 a.m. with coffee and doughnuts. In conjunction with the bee, a silent auction will be held, with items ranging from restaurant meals to sports memorabilia.
“We are still hearing positive feedback from people who entered a team last year,” says Ms. Round. “We hope more individuals and organizations will enter this year. Last year we had 13 teams.”
Competition kicks off at 9 a.m. with the Honey Bee Round. After three rounds of 15 words each, points will be tallied and the top three teams will advance to the Ultimate Stinger Round. Mulligans can be purchased before the start of the rounds for $15 each, allowing a team to skip one word and receive credit for it.
The most recent census estimates for Rogers County education attainment are alarming: For 18 to 24 year-olds, over 1,200 of our citizens have not graduated from high school. For 25-plus year-olds, over 5,800 have less than a high school diploma; over 1,600 of these did not complete ninth grade. In these uncertain economic times, it is especially difficult for those with low literacy skills to compete successfully for employment. It is crucial for the Council to count on community support to continue to offer free reading instruction to adults countywide.
The Rogers County Literacy Council is a private non-profit organization offering literacy services to individuals, 16 and over, who wish to learn to read. For more information about the RCLC or the spelling bee, email eat1@eau1eav1eaw1 or call the office, located at 1515 N. Florence in the Will Rogers Library in Claremore, at (918) 277-4331. Office hours are Tuesdays and Thursdays from 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
After 30 years in public school education, Carol Round retired and moved from Grand Lake to Claremore, Oklahoma in 2005, where she writes a weekly faith-based column which runs in 14 Oklahoma newspapers as well as several national and international publications. Three volumes of her columns have been compiled into collections: A Matter of Faith, Faith Matters and by FAITH alone. She has also written Journaling with Jesus: How to Draw Closer to God and a companion workbook, The 40-Day Challenge. This past year she has written three children’s books, a series called Nana’s 3 Jars, to teach children about the value of giving, saving and spending money. All of Carol’s books are available through Amazon. In addition to writing her weekly column, authoring books and speaking to women’s groups, she writes for Value News. She also blogs regularly at www.carolaround.com. When she is not writing or speaking, she loves spending time with her three grandchildren, working in her flowerbeds, shooting photos, volunteering at her church or going on mission trips overseas, and hiking. She is also an avid reader and loves working crosswords and trying to solve Sudoku puzzles.