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September 2014 Newsletter

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September 2014

WordMasters News!


Welcome back to school!  By now, all our participating schools are back in session, eagerly awaiting the start of the 28th annual WordMasters Challenge.  If you haven't re-enrolled yet, don't waste another minute!  Click here to go directly to our online enrollment page.  Consider expanding your WordMasters program to include additional grade levels, or create a Blue Division and a Gold Division team within the same grade to appropriately challenge all of your students. Don't forget -- significant discounts are offered to schools who enroll multiple teams.

A special welcome to all the teams that are participating in their very first WordMasters Challenge.  Watch your inbox for a message that includes detailed instructions and tips for implementing our program in your school. Been around WordMasters for many years, but looking for some inspiration?  Click on Teacher Tools or Idea Gallery under the RESOURCES tab at our website, or check out the Welcome Kit materials posted.

We haven't implemented any major changes this year in the way you enroll your teams, download materials, create student records or submit Challenge scores.  As a result, it should be easier than ever to hit the ground running once Meet #1 Word Lists are posted on October 1st.  We will send out an email reminder towards the end of September, but you can log into your account and set up your student records at any time.

Here's to another great year of WordMasters!

WordMasters™ Student in National Spelling Bee

Congratulations to Tejas, a 5th grade Gold WordMasters team member from Rivers Edge Elementary School in Glen Allen, VA! He was Speller No. 263 in the Scripps National Spelling Bee this year. Tejas successfully spelled his way to the top 46, making it to the semifinals.

At the end of the semifinal round, 31 spellers remained on stage. Based on a combined score of computer-based vocabulary testing and the spelling success on stage, 12 finalists moved one to the championship round. Tejas was among the the final twelve. Amazing!

In a competition that saw its first co-champions in 52 years, Tejas finished tied for 8th place. With three years of eligibility left, we look forward to seeing him, and hopefully other WordMasters students, in the National Spelling Bee for years to come.

 

"If I Knew Then: A Letter to Me..."

Edutopia and SoulPancake worked together to create a video for teacher appreciation. They asked teachers to write letters to themselves of their first day of teaching. Watch and see what teachers wrote.

What would you say to yourself?

Thank You for Taking Our Survey!

Over 725 Team Leaders have filled out our customer survey. You provided us with great insight as we continue to look for ways to improve WordMasters™.

Watch for results to be shared in upcoming newsletters. Thank you for all you do! We appreciate it.

Registration is Open for 2014-15 WordMasters Challenge™

It’s simple! Visit our website, www.WordMastersChallenge.com, and click on the yellow Enroll Now button on the right-side of the screen.
  • Enrollment fee is still only $95 per team, with volume discounts for schools enrolling 5 or more teams or school districts registering 5 or more schools. See our website for details.
  • You can pay using a credit card online, or we can invoice you.
  • If you need to request a purchase order click this link, or download the order form found at the bottom of our home page (you can also find it under the ENROLL tab) and submit it to your purchasing department. We ask that you still complete the online enrollment form and select the “Bill Me Later” option to ensure we have accurate and complete contact information. We will invoice you once we receive your purchase order. It’s that easy!

Enrollment for the 2014-15 WordMasters Challenge™ closes on September 30th!

2014-15 WordMasters Challenge™ Calendar




Enrollment Deadline: September 30, 2014

Meet #1
Word Lists Available Oct. 1st
Test Administered   Nov. 17th - Dec. 5th 
Score Reporting Deadline   Dec. 12th
Results Available  Dec. 26th
  
Meet #2
Word Lists Available Dec. 8th
Test Administered   Feb. 2nd - Feb. 20th 
Score Reporting Deadline   Feb. 27th
Results Available  March 13th
  
Meet #3
Word Lists Available Feb. 23rd
Test Administered   April 6th-April 24th 
Score Reporting Deadline   May 1st
Results Available  May 15th
  
Cumulative Champions Announced   May 15th 

In This Issue

What Works in Your Classroom?

Share your successful teaching tips, photos, or videos. E-mail us at lisa.kennedy@wordmasterschallenge.com and we'll add it to the Idea Gallery.

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April 2014 Newsletter

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WordMasters News!


By now, all our teams should be headed into the homestretch of the 2013-14 WordMasters Challenge. In fact, a few schools have already administered Meet #3 and entered their scores! Keep in mind that although the Challenge Schedule indicates that Meet #3 should take place between April 7 and April 25th, it's okay to postpone the test until the following week as long as scores are submitted by midnight on May 2nd. PLEASE NOTE:  WE WILL NOT BE ABLE TO ACCEPT OR ENTER ANY SCORES AFTER MAY 2nd! We have a very tight turnaround to process Meet #3 scores as well as cumulative results by May 16th. Although your school may be in session until July to make up an abundance of snow days (!), we have schools in many parts of the country that complete their academic year mid to late May. We appreciate your cooperation in getting your scores in before the deadline.

REVISIONS TO 7B TEST AND 3G ANSWER KEY
Thanks to some eagle-eyed Team Leaders, we have caught and corrected typos on the 7B Challenge Test and the 3G Answer Key. Any files downloaded since April 9th are correct. If you downloaded either of these files prior to April 9th, please note the following:
  • On the 7B test, #13 should read: SUBSERVIENT : IMPERIOUS :: ABJECT : _______________. The original file incorrectly used IMPERVIOUS in the first word pair.
  • On the GOLD ANSWER KEY, the answer to #16 should read (e) a trace. The original file incorrectly stated the answer as (a) a trace.
We apologize for any inconvenience these errors may have caused.

MEDALS & CERTIFICATES
The end-of-year mailing with your medals and certificates is heading to the Post Office today (see below for details). As a reminder, you receive one Champion Medal and ten Achievement Certificates for each team you have enrolled. It's up to you to determine how to award or distribute these items. If you need extra medals (sold separately for $6) or certificates (sold in groups of 5 for $5), please place your order online for immediate shipping. Remember that merchandise orders must be prepaid with credit card or linked to a school purchase order.

WordMasters™ Spring Mailing

Watch your mail for a packet from WordMasters™ that will contain:

  • One Champion Medal for each team you have enrolled (with blue or gold neck ribbon)
  • Ten Achievement Certificates you can fill out and distribute as desired
  • Re-enrollment instructions for the 2014-15 WordMasters Challenge™ (includes order form if you need to request a Purchase Order)

The mailing is scheduled for Friday, April 11th. If you have not received your packet by May 1st, please contact us.

Celebrating Meet #2 Success: WordMasters™ Press Release Template

After each meet, WordMasters™ prepares and sends press releases to the primary school contact for each team placing in the Top Ten within its division, as well as to schools with one or more students earning a perfect score of 20.

To share your team's success with your school or local media, we have created a WordMasters™ Press Release Template, in the Teacher Tools section, which can be downloaded from the website and customized in Microsoft Word for your school. 

Student Spotlight:
Richmond, VA WordMaster Prepared for National Spelling Bee

Tejas Muthusamy, a fifth-grader at Rivers Edge Elementary School, has achieved a perfect score of 20 on each of the first two WordMasters Challenge meets this year. He also is preparing for the Scripps National Spelling Bee in May. Good luck, Tejas! We're all cheering you on.

Click here to read the article about Tejas which ran in the Richmond Times-Dispatch in March.

WordMasters™ Team Leader, Deb Gribben, told us about her outstanding student, Tejas. E-mail us with information about your outstanding students as well. We'd love to put them in the spotlight.

"The Key to Innovation: Making Smart Analogies" by Annie Murphy Paul

Recently, Annie Murphy Paul shared a copy of the speech she gave at the 2014 Sandbox Summit in her "Brilliant Blog". In her speech she highlighted how useful analogies can provide new theories to test and also help make sense of unexpected results. All of which leads to new discoveries.

Click here to read her speech and to follow her blog--she's one of our favorites.


2014-15 WordMasters Challenge™ Calendar




Enrollment Deadline: September 30, 2014

Meet #1
Word Lists Available Oct. 13th
Test Administered   Nov. 17th - Dec 5th 
Score Reporting Deadline   Dec. 12th
Results Available  Dec. 26th
  
Meet #2
Word Lists Available Dec. 8th
Test Administered   Feb. 2nd - Feb. 20th 
Score Reporting Deadline   Feb. 27th
Results Available  March 13th
  
Meet #3
Word Lists Available Feb. 23rd
Test Administered   April 6th-April 24th 
Score Reporting Deadline   May 1st
Results Available  May 15th
  
Cumulative Champions Announced   May 15th 

Calendar Reminders

Meet #3 Test Administered:
April 7th - April 24th



WordMasters Challenge Meet #3
Word Lists Available Feb. 24th
Test Administered   April 7th-April 25th 
Score Reporting Deadline   May 2nd
Results Available  May 16th
  
Cumulative Champions Announced   May 16th 

To find the entire 2013-14 WordMasters Challenge™ Calendar click here or the Challenge Schedule can be found under the Resources tab on the WordMasters Challenge™ website.


 

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Suddenly there’s a love affair with words in my classroom!

– 6th grade teacher from Florida

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