Can you spell marocain? That’s the winning word from the 2017 Scripps National Spelling Bee, which was won by 7th grader Ananya Vinay— who also happens to be an avid Quizlet user.
Since she credited Quizlet with being such a big help in getting ready for last year’s Bee, we asked Ananya if she would be willing to make exclusive study sets to help this year’s batch of super spellers, and she was gracious enough to say yes. (Thank you, Ananya!)
Study with Ananya's sets
Just in time to keep up with the contestants of this year’s National Spelling Bee, Ananya is sharing her own study sets on Quizlet that helped her take home the 2017 title. She's already released a beginning/intermediate set and will be publishing an advanced set on May 23rd — so make sure to check her Quizlet profile then!
So you can study just like Ananya did, each set will be equipped with the word, pronunciation, part of speech (i.e., verb, noun, adjective, etc.), definition and memory tips, as well as a representative picture and audio recording of the pronunciation.
A preview of one of Ananya's sets.
Ananya’s top tips
Learning words by studying them on Quizlet is great way to get ready for any spelling bee, but winning takes more than rote memorization. Here are Ananya’s other tips for aspiring champs:
Don’t discount the power of definitions. Many students who are looking to quickly ace a spelling test focus only on the spelling and pay no attention to what the words mean. Understanding definitions, origins and roots is vital for making complex words stick in your brain long-term.
Practice (and organization) makes perfect. Ananya created a grid for each set of 250 words she would study in a Quizlet set. She divided them by phonetic pronunciation, part of speech, language of origin, definition and a column dedicated to “Ananya Tips” – an interesting tidbit about the word that would help her remember it. For instance, for “mnemonic” she wrote “This word comes from Mnemosyne, the goddess of memory. Her hair was as long as her memory.”
Timing is an individual game. Once Ananya spent an hour with a study set, she only needed to review it two or three more times to fully commit it to memory, but just because this method worked for Ananya doesn’t mean it’s a universal tactic. Everyone memorizes and learns at their own pace, so figure out what works for you and stick with that groove once you find it.
Spell things out for yourself – literally! For words with certain language origins, Ananya gave herself language hints within her study sets. For instance, for the word “lokshen,” a Yiddish word derived from Russian, Ananya reiterated in her notes that this word is spelled just like it sounds because the “k” sound is spelled with a “k” in Russian. For “haiku,” she noted that the rules of Japanese are kept fairly constant, with the ī sound spelled with “ai.”
Do you have other good tips for using Quizlet to help get ready for spelling tests? Share in the comments below! And good luck to everyone participating in this year’s national bee. 🐝