A bee queen

Joanne Lee’s (second from left at front) success in the Prime Minister’s Spelling Bee is celebrated by her Bull Creek classmates.

BULL CREEK Primary School year 6 student Joanne Lee has taken out the national Prime Minister’s Spelling Bee award for her age group.

Joanne reckons there were a few “tricky” words in the national final, but by sounding them out and writing them down she got through with just one error.

Although she thought misspelling “vespers” had probably robbed her of victory, Joanne was still hopeful of getting runner-up.

“I felt kind of nervous,” she said about the final.

“It did feel very dramatic.

“I was just really thinking about the spelling of the words, I didn’t really think about what would happen afterwards.”

Joanne says the attention after her win was a bit “embarrassing” but when she gets to meet prime minister Anthony Albanese as part of her prize, she’s got something up her sleeve.

“I’m going to ask how to spell a hard word. I might ask him if he can spell vespers,” she said.

Joanne, whose favourite books are the Artemis Fowl series and anything by author Cressida Cowell, said her mum helped prepare for the spelling bee by regularly reading out 30 words from a spelling book.

She wasn’t the only one from Bull Creek to taste some success in the spelling bee, with Clarice Lau’s 27 correct words in 1:23 minutes getting her into the state final.

Ten of the Sheoak Sixes from the school took part, with Joanne and Clarice’s classmates egging them on for the finals.

Apart from shaking the PM’s hand, an new iPad and a HarperCollins book pack, Joanne’s win might also get her a spot as guest quiz master on Channel 10’s Have You Been Paying Attention.

by STEVE GRANT

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