The finals will be held at Dubai Parks & Resorts - Motiongate on February 10 Image Credit: Supplied

ABU DHABI: More than 2,000 students from over 40 schools in the UAE in different curriculums are competing in the fifth edition of the Kellogg’s Coco Pops Spelling Bee Championship which got under way recently.

The preliminary rounds are currently underway in various schools. The finals will be held at Dubai Parks & Resorts - Motiongate on February 10.

The championship, which is patterned after the US-based Scripps National Spelling Bee, was launched in the UAE in 2011 and carries a top prize of Dh25,000 plus a trip to Washington DC to watch the US championship final.

Test of a champion

“We are very delighted to be the main sponsor of the championship as it helps to deliver our purpose of nourishing young minds,” said Lamia Fakhr, corporate communications manager of Kellogg MedMEA.

The competition is open from grades six to 10 and includes a prescribed study list of 5,000 words which are divided into three rounds. The preliminary and semifinal rounds have 26 written words and two oral rounds each. The finals are based on elimination of each candidate through oral rounds only.

Although a study list is given, the true test of a champion is to spell words outside the list.

In the inaugural year, ‘abscissa’ which means the distance from a point on a graph to the y-axis, was the winning word that crowned 14-year-old Ram Sankar from Indian High School, Dubai, as the UAE’s first champion.

“Our past records of success have set the bar high and we are looking forward to a well-fought competition. It is wonderful to see such amazing energy in students which is necessary because this competition is intense, tough and demands excellence,” said Renuka Singh, MD of Spelling Bee UAE.

For more information, visit www.spellingbeeuae.com