February Spelling Bee Tips & Tricks

Chinches y Cocos: Spelling Bee Practice Game

So you’ve selected your 16 students to attend FeriaSCSC. Everyone is practicing diligently for the Impromptu Speaking and Timed Writing. But how can you get everyone involved in practicing for the Spelling Bee when only one person represents your school?

Easy! Spelling practice and games help everyone on your team. The more words students are exposed to, the more vocabulary options they will have in their back pocket when it comes to language production in the Impromptu Speaking and Timed Writing categories.

You can access the complete list of words from the Spelling Bee tab at FeriaSCSC.org. Also, check out the Tips & Tricks tab for more practice ideas!

One fun game that my students love is called Chinches y Cocos. Here’s how it works:

  1. Divide your students into two teams (the Chinches and the Cocos).
  2. One person from each team comes up to the board with a marker.
  3. The teacher calls out a word from the official list and the students race to spell the word correctly on the board.
  4. Students “buzz in” their word by raising the hand holding the marker, indicating they are finished.
  5. Both students incorrect? Put that word back in the pot and try another one!
  6. The winner of the race adds an X or O on a Tic-Tac-Toe board drawn off to the side. Three in a row gets the team a point.
  7. Tip: This is a good opportunity to review sounds and letters in Spanish. You could have students verbally spell the word they have written for a bonus point, or as a part of the game in order to receive the point.
  8. Bonus: As the teacher calls out words, he or she can also go over definitions and ways to remember it. Hopefully these words make it into future assignments!