On May 6, over 700 students, teachers, pedagogic inspectors, and Ministry of Secondary Education officials gathered in the multipurpose hall of the Government High School (GHS) in Limbe to witness the first Spelling Bee event in the South West Region of Cameroon. Organized by the U.S Embassy in Yaounde, in partnership with the delegation for secondary education, and the Cameroon English Language and Literature Teachers Association (CAMELTA), the Limbe Spelling Bee competition brought together 24 candidates from eight schools of the Fako division. It took three hours, 12 rounds, and 68 words spelled for thirteen-year old Netongo Charity, a student of the GHS in Batoke to emerge the champion. During the final competition against runner up Meli Tacahuala Imelda from GHS Limbe, Charity correctly spelled the winning word: “tachometer.”
The Limbe event was the fourth Spelling Bee competition organized by the U.S. Embassy this year, and led by Information Resource Center (IRC) Director Mathias Tientcheu and IRC Reference Librarian Edna Enyeji. Similar events took place in Yaounde, Douala and Bamenda in February and March 2015.
Through the Spelling Bee competition, the U.S. Embassy envisages to rekindle students’ interest in correct English usage and contribute in improving their spelling abilities by providing strategies to increase vocabulary, memorize words, and learn new concepts.
In her closing statement, Mrs. Ikunde Njomo, Divisional Delegate for Secondary Education in Fako, expressed the gratitude of the education community to the U.S. Embassy for bringing the Spelling Bee to Limbe. “We are certain that activities like the spelling bee will contribute in improving our students’ performance in official examinations while at the time raising the standards of written and spoken Engish in the division,” she added.
Speaking for the U.S. Embassy, Mr. Tientcheu noted: “Today’s event underscores the commitment of the United States of America to implement programs in partnership with the government and people of Cameroon, especially students, to implement programs to promote education, including for girls. All great dreams require an education to be achieved. We are honored to partner with you on these efforts to serve Cameroonian youth!”.
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