Learn to spell well with PDF study aids

The 77th Annual Scripps National Spelling Bee is unfolding this week in Washington, D.C., pitting 265 top entrants from across the country in a three-day ‘make a mistake and you’re out’ ‘spelldown’ to determine the country’s best school-age (9-15) speller — the last one left standing after correctly spelling a wide range of both popular and uncommon words.

For those hoping to qualify and/or prepare for a future ‘Bee,’ there are a variety of free, PDF-based study aids available to help polish one’s spelling skills, including Merriam-Webster’s ‘Dictionary of Prefixes, Suffixes, and Combining Forms‘ [PDF: 1 MB] that ‘provides entries for prefixes, suffixes, and combining forms’ taken from Webster’s Third New International Dictionary, Unabridged, copyright 2002.

Another valued resource is the ‘Consolidated Word List‘ (excerpted at right), a compilation of more than 100 Scripps National Spelling Bee word lists dating as far back as 1950. According to the description, it contains 23,413 unique words — parts of speech, language origins, pronunciations, definitions, and sentences are provided for 10,139 of these words.

You can also download the Contest Rules [PDF: 156kb] for the annual educational event.

The 2004 winner will be named on Thursday, June 3.

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About the Author: Kurt Foss

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