Photo Gallery: District Spelling Bee '18

Anastasia Prodanchuk waits for her next word during the 2018 District Spelling Bee. She finished as runner-up to three-time District spelling champion Andrew Ticao of John Mills.

PHOTO: Elmwood 6th-grade student Anastasia Prodanchuk waits for her next word during the 2018 District Spelling Bee. She finished as runner-up to three-time District spelling champion Andrew Ticao of John Mills. D401 photo by Dave Porreca (click image to enlarge).


Andrew Ticao, a 6th grader at John Mills Elementary School, has won the Elmwood Park Spelling Bee for the third consecutive year.

He achieved the feat Friday, Jan. 19, at Elmwood Elementary School as students from Mills and Elmwood demonstrated their spelling skills before an audience of hundreds of fellow students, parents and community members.

Anastasia Prodanchuk, an Elmwood 6th grader, finished as runner-up. She and Andrew were the only students to reach the 11th round. They continued to spar until the 15th round, when Andrew correctly spelled “practitioner” and “morsel” to clinch the title.


Students compete in the 2018 District Spelling Bee.

PHOTO: Andrew Ticao and Anastasia Prodanchuk, the eventual winner and runner-up respectively of the 2018 District Spelling Bee, await the start of the final round of competition. D401 photo by Dave Porreca (click image to enlarge).


The contest featured more than 30 competitors selected from grades 4-6. The students were the top spellers in each of their schools based on the results of the Spelling Bee’s qualifying exam. For the first time, the District's winning student received a trophy, which will be housed for the next year at the student's school.

Friday’s contest was the beginning of a multi-stage selection process that will choose participants nationwide for the 2018 Scripps National Spelling Bee, scheduled for May 27 to June 1 in the Washington, D.C., area.

Andrew will now advance to the West Suburban Cook County Bee, to be held Feb. 12 at McClure Junior High School in Western Springs. He will also receive a yearlong subscription to Britannica Online for Kids and a $50 gift certificate donated by Foss Swim School.

The judges for this year’s Elmwood Park contest were EPHS Assistant Principal Ms. Sheri Costello, D401 Reading Director Ms. Anne Hufnus and Elm Middle School Principal Dr. Kathleen Porreca. The official pronouncer was Superintendent of Schools Dr. Nicolas Wade.

The Elmwood and John Mills teams were coached, respectively, by Ms. Stephanie Hagins and Ms. Annina Wanzung.


NOTE: To view the following photos in a slideshow format, click any of the pictures below. All photos are by Dave Porreca, D401 web/media specialist.