Joshua Diocares from Ridge Park Charter School spelled his way into contention in Washington, DC, but was tripped up by a flower

Diocares Is Off To A Good Start, Was In Contention To Make Televised Finals

12 year old Joshua advanced to the quarterfinals, but was eliminated when he misspelled 'auricula' early Wednesday morning. What is an 'auricula' you ask? let's find out!

Josh went with the O-R-I-C-U-L-A spelling, which is exactly how I would have spelled it.

The quarters were held Wednesday afternoon, with the semi-finals beginning at 8pm Wednesday and the the national finals at 8pm Thursday evening. All rounds are available via the  ION-PLUS and BOUNCE XL networks. It is hosted by LaVar Burton of Reading Rainbow fame. To find an ION affiliate locally click here. It is also available on the  Hulu app.

Diocares Is Sponsored By The Kent Intermediate School District

He won the district's spelling competition earlier this year to advance to the National Finals. He is in the sixth grade at Ridge Park Charter.

Courtesy Scripps Spelling Bee
Courtesy Scripps Spelling Bee
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According to this page biography on the National Spelling Bee web site, he also is a fan of the Beatles, especially John Lennon, and likes the song "Hey, Bulldog". He is described as:

... a talented student of mathematics. When he was in 5th grade, his teacher thought he would be bored with standard 5th grade math, so she enrolled him in 7th grade advanced math. He has studied both algebra and calculus. He can also play a few instruments: piano, violin, and – recently – guitar and bass. When he was in 4th grade, his whole grade was nearly featured on the news for drawing posters to support people funding the poor, but because of the snowy weather the news couldn't film or interview them.

Another West Michigan Speller Made The Quarterfinals

14 year old eighth grader Pihu Sahai, sponsored by the Herald Palladium in St. Joseph, went out in the quarters after misspelling 'curettage'. I hate that double TT! It spells Trouble!

Not only can you watch the finals on Hulu, but you can also follow along on Twitter on the National Spelling Bee page. 

The National Spelling Bee first started in 1925 when nine newspapers joined together to host a spelling bee. That year, only nine were in the championship, having the honor of meeting President Calvin Coolidge before going head-to-head. In 1941, the Scripps Howard News Service took over the event and has run it since with the help of local sponsors, the majority of which are daily and weekly newspapers.

Before it became commonly called "spelling bees," it went by Trials in Spelling, Spelling School, Spelling Match, Spelling-Fight and Spelling Combat, according to Webster's.

I kind of wish they would still call it the Spelling-Fight. It has a little gravitas.

Words Michiganders Don't Understand