Return to Headlines

Super speller wins with escritoire

Kanshita Dam, 2020 CCSD Spelling Bee winner Chukwudiebube Nwobodo, winner of the written test, second place overall Kanshita Dam, a seventh-grader at the Challenge School, successfully spelled the word escritoire, which is a piece of furniture resembling a bureau and providing a writing surface, to win the 2020 Cherry Creek School District Spelling Bee. She demonstrated spelling skill and stamina to beat 29 other super spellers during the competition, held Jan. 25 at Smoky Hill High School.

Chukwudiebube Nwobodo, a seventh grade student at Fox Ridge Middle School, took second place and Homestead Elementary fifth-grader Brahan Eashwer took third place in the competition. The contest featured dozens of challenging words like pleonexia, which means extreme greed for wealth or material possessions, and beaumontage, a composition used by artisans to fill and conceal holes or cracks in wood or metal.

Nearly 1,000 students took part in the spelling bee process, which began with school bees held at elementary and middle schools earlier this year. The top spellers from each school then competed in the district bee, which began with a 15-word vocabulary test and a 35-word written spelling test held on Jan. 24. Fox Ridge’s Nwobodo took top honors on the written test.

The next day, the top 30 spellers took part in the oral spelling bee, which was a marathon of sorts. Students continued to spell word after word correctly. First-time spelling bee participant Keegan Floyd , a fourth-grader at Heritage Elementary, made it to the fourth round before stumbling on the word permafrost. He had this advice for other students who might be interested in trying something new.

“Don’t give up and keep trying to do something you want to do,” Floyd said.

Mission Viejo second-grader, James Swanson, the youngest student in the bee, made it to the sixth round, before missing the word contagion. He said he prepared for the competition by using a spelling app called WordClub.

CCSD Spelling Bee State Qualifiers

The CCSD Spelling Bee is sponsored by the district’s Office of Gifted and Talented Services, which provides programming and support for gifted and advanced learners. The top 20 spellers from the district bee will go on to represent Cherry Creek Schools in the Colorado State Spelling Bee on March 14 at the University of Denver. They are:

  • Kanshita Dam, seventh-grader, Challenge School
  • Chukwudiebube Nwobodo, seventh-grader, Fox Ridge Middle School
  • Brahan Eashwer, fifth-grader, Homestead Elementary
  • Rithvik Ijju, eighth-grader, Challenge School
  • Shreya Rajan, eighth-grader, Thunder Ridge Middle School
  • Banks Billings, sixth-grader, West Middle School
  • Taryn Midtbo, seventh-grader, Liberty Middle School
  • Mbone Elango, eighth-grader, Liberty Middle School
  • Kaemon Vita, sixth-grader, Campus Middle School
  • Olivia Ott, sixth-grader, West Middle School
  • Jaxon Lenderman, eighth-grader, West Middle School
  • Kiran Herz, sixth-grader, Challenge School
  • Hari Gridharan, seventh-grader, West Middle School
  • Jennifer Oh, eighth-grader, Campus Middle School
  • Allison Shaw, seventh-grader, Fox Ridge Middle School              
  • Derek Schlenk, sixth-grader, Laredo Middle School
  • Naya Kennedy, seventh-grader, Laredo Middle School
  • Jonas Cummings, eighth-grader, Horizon Community Middle School
  • Anusree Roy, eighth-grader, Cherry Creek Academy
  • Shiven Singh, fifth-grader, Creekside Elementary

 Congratulations and good luck to all of these super spellers!  

See more photos from the CCSD Spelling Bee on the Cherry Creek Schools Facebook page!

Posted 1/27/2020.