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Local spellers ready for national competition

SYRACUSE (WSYR-TV) – Three Central New York Students are headed to the National Spelling Bee next week.

14-year-old Maja Cannavo from Manlius Pebble Hill School has been practicing two to three hours a day, although she said having to know definitions in the early rounds isn’t something she bargained for. She learned of the new rules in April.
“I think it’s hard because I haven’t had much of a chance to study definitions,” said Cannavo.
But between practice and her active middle school life, she said she has been picking up new words all around her every day.
“I pay really good attention to things around me. I remember a lot of stuff that other people don’t remember, so, and I also like to read, so I remember the words and how they are spelled and how they look,” said Cannavo.
13-year-old Abirami Ratnakumar from Seneca Falls Middle School and 14-year-old Philip Andrew Cummings from Oswego Middle School will also be competing in the National Spelling Bee which includes a 1st Place prize of $30,000.