Spelling Bees: wtf?

Discussion in 'Community Discussion' started by sikkinixx, Apr 14, 2007.

  1. sikkinixx macrumors 68020

    sikkinixx

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2005
    Location:
    Rocketing through the sky!
    #1
    Ok this is picking me. Sorry if I come across as a jerk or ignorant or what have you but seriously, what the hell is up with Spelling Bees? more accurately, what the hell is up with them not only being televised, but talked about on the news?

    I flip on the morning news and they are doing interviews with the Canwest National (Canada) spelling bee organizers, the kids, the judges, blah blah blah. Huh? It's a spelling bee for gods sake.

    I realize those kids are extremely talented and make me feel like a moron because I can't spell xahjotrjaphila, and they are participating for a lot of money in scholarships, etc. But...seriously....it's spelling. I don't understand the wide spread appeal that carries a Spelling Bee to be on TV, prime-time on a Saturday evening on a major network. I'm majoring in 12th century Byzantine history and literature, most people don't even know what that is and those who do give me a collective *yawn* when they hear about it, yet a ton of people seem to be interested in watching a Spelling Bee! My parents included! Spelling is more interesting than world altering history?! And whats more, it's useless. Need to know how to spell something? Thats why you have a dictionary! It's not like these kids actually know what the word is used for, or it means, they just know how to write it out.

    It is sour grapes on my part that people don't care about history but .....words fail me. I just don't get the whole spelling bee circus.

    [/confused rant]
     
  2. PlaceofDis macrumors Core

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2004
  3. psycoswimmer macrumors 65816

    psycoswimmer

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2006
    Location:
    USA
    #3
    Because at one point "spelling competitions" was too hard to spell?

    I think some people get the thrill of watching other people spell and possibly get it wrong. Didn't that one kid faint or something last year?
     
  4. TheAnswer macrumors 68030

    TheAnswer

    Joined:
    Jan 25, 2002
    Location:
    Orange County, CA
    #4
    From wikipedia:
     
  5. MP4-22 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2007
    Location:
    Illinois
    #5
    My family always watch spelling bees. My mom also has lots of spelling bee movies. I think they are really boring.

    In 8th grade I almost won my school spelling bee. I ended up losing to a 4th grader.
     
  6. psycoswimmer macrumors 65816

    psycoswimmer

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2006
    Location:
    USA
    #6
    Could I ask what word it was? I'm just curious. Then again, you may not remember.

    Our school has a yearly spelling bee. I'm an okay speller but I don't like competitions like that. I'm just not interested in them.
     
  7. BarryW macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2007
    Location:
    South Africa, Jo'burg /U.A.E, Dubai
    #7
    I remember seeing one on ESPN, and was quite amused. I am not sure why it is televised.

    Are the prizes any good?

    In primary(junior) school we had a "spelling bee" but it was a written test, and the entire school had to participate.
    Never really understood the difference between that and a regular spelling test.
     
  8. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2004
    Location:
    Grand Rapids, MI, USA
    #8
    So, basically... you're upset that other people are more interested in what they're good at than what you're good at, 'nixx? :confused:

    How about thinking about it this way? Third graders are not ready to make meaningful contributions to the development of Western history (in which you are engaged), neuroscience (in which I am engaged), postmodern philosophy, etc, etc. One intellectual activity they are capable of is spelling bees. By recognizing and celebrating achievement in an area of life that actually stretches their brains, and in which they can actually participate, society broadly endorses the value of scholarship, doesn't it?

    So perhaps more people should be interested in Byzantium, although I could certainly ask why they should continue the ethnocentric overvaluation of developments in the West and undervaluation of developments in Africa, Asia, the early Americas, and elsewhere, that also shaped the modern world. And you could certainly ask why anyone would want to understand the behavioral manifestations of depression and what it teaches us about the neurophysiological interaction between the endocrine system and motivated behavior.

    We would both certainly have points to be made in asking that... but I don't see how either point invalidates some little kids playing spelling bee.
     
  9. sikkinixx thread starter macrumors 68020

    sikkinixx

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2005
    Location:
    Rocketing through the sky!
    #9
    As I said, it is somewhat sour grapes on my part :D I suppose cheering on kids to learn more is a good thing over but I just fail to see the interesting part of nervous kids standing on stage spelling words. Why not have kids do math problems on a big chalkboard on tv? Maybe it's a traditional thing I dunno. The fact that is televised on ESPN, and gets significant news coverage boggles my mind. It hardly seems like a spectator sport but I guess it is to many people.

    And why are there no adult spelling bee's on tv? Why not just make a pro circuit? Is it because the kids are cute so they get a spelling bee?
     
  10. ghall macrumors 68040

    ghall

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2006
    Location:
    Rhode Island
    #10
    spelling bee=everything that's wrong with this world
    I'd rather watch 90 year old ladies doing breakdancing. That would be awesome. :D
     
  11. thedude110 macrumors 68020

    thedude110

    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2005
    #11
    In a spelling bee the kids essentially play out our human drama. Few care about the words or the kids -- it's the metaphor (the kids are the metaphor -- would we give a crap about spelling bees between 50 year olds?) of hope and despair, of luck and triumph that hooks us, invests us. It's our own shadows we particularly care about.

    Such that:

    We watch a spelling bee and we see ourselves in front of that microphone, groping our way toward the end of each word.
     
  12. dornoforpyros macrumors 68040

    dornoforpyros

    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2004
    Location:
    Calgary, AB
    #12
    Well some people find it entertaining (eg: the parents)

    And now why do you suppose the always impartial canwest media company would promo...errr I mean "report" about their own event as news? I mean it wouldn't be about advertising dollars would it?

    It's the same reason CTV reports Canadian Idol as "news"
     
  13. d_and_n5000 macrumors 6502a

    d_and_n5000

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2005
    #13
    I always figured the point was to get kids excited about something learning related, and to actually make them better spellers. People thrive on competition, for some reason, its just the human nature. And its certainly a good thing to be able to spell. The whole competition is something that would get the kids worked up about spelling things—wouldn't you try to learn how to spell complicated words to try to get the praise from doing well, and the excitement, and such?—and the knowledge learned from it is something the kids can use for a lifetime.

    Plus, I think that they like crushing each other and if they're good enough, the free trip to DC. That would be motivation enough for me:cool:.
     
  14. Veritas&Equitas macrumors 68000

    Veritas&Equitas

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2005
    Location:
    Twin Cities, MN
    #14
    <------- District Spelling Bee Champion, 7th Place at State (7th grade). Yeah, you love it.
     
  15. CanadaRAM macrumors G5

    CanadaRAM

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2004
    Location:
    On the Left Coast - Victoria BC Canada
    #15
    Don't you think it's valuable for kids to experience competition in some other venue than athletics?
     
  16. MP4-22 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2007
    Location:
    Illinois
    #16
    It was idiosyncratic. I knew how to spell it since I got it some time earlier but i said w instead of y

    Yah, the 4th grader was crazy at spelling. She won the school spelling bee every year from 4th-8th grade and won the district once.
     
  17. sikkinixx thread starter macrumors 68020

    sikkinixx

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2005
    Location:
    Rocketing through the sky!
    #17
    Thats why on the third day, God created Xbox Live :D So that 11 year olds can scream profanity during online matches of Halo 2 and learn about how winning isn't everything, its the only thing.
     
  18. roland.g macrumors 603

    roland.g

    Joined:
    Apr 11, 2005
    Location:
    One mile up and soaring
    #18
    Have you read the atrocious spelling that is out there now because no one learns to spell. Read posts for a day and you may start sponsoring your own local spelling bees for high school students.
     
  19. steamboat26 macrumors 65816

    steamboat26

    Joined:
    May 25, 2006
    Location:
    Arlington VA
    #19
    I agree, the fact that they are shown on ESPN is pretty sad

    But then again, the world championship of arm wrestling and paintball have been on ESPN :D

    **NOTE: I am not saying paintball is not a sport, just that it is stupid to televise it, the same with arm wresting.**
     
  20. P-Worm macrumors 68020

    P-Worm

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2002
    Location:
    Salt Lake City, UT
    #20
    Thou **** not speak blasphemy against Sylvester Stallone's greatest movie.

    P-Worm
     
  21. Mammoth macrumors 6502a

    Mammoth

    Joined:
    Nov 29, 2005
    Location:
    Canada
    #21
    Well, extreme eating is routinely on television.
     
  22. EricNau Moderator emeritus

    EricNau

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2005
    Location:
    San Francisco, CA
    #22
    I can find nothing wrong with Spelling Bees, although I'm still confused about the last one I heard about.

    Apparently, the winning word was "ursprache" ...pronounced exactly how it sounds. Shouldn't they be a little more difficult? :confused:
     

Share This Page