PLT 6-12 campus 8th grader Alex Ottens won the R.O.E. #47 Regional Spelling Bee today at Dixon High School. As the winner, Ottens automatically qualifies to compete in the Scripps National Spelling Bee in Washington, D.C. on May 28th.
Ottens spelled “superlative” in round 13 of the competition for the win.
PLT 6-12 campus teacher and spelling bee coach Emily Higgins said Ottens took the win in stride. “He was just very calm and very prepared for every word. He told me he was very confident with level one and level two words but was a bit worried about words in level three”.
The contest included 31 students from schools across Lee, Ogle and Whiteside counties.
Higgins said was a bit more excited than her student in the final stages of the competition. “I was a basket case. In my opinion he proved himself worthy of winning just based on the words he was having to spell. He got some very difficult words including astringent and hijab.” Higgins said that Ottens has been practicing about ninety minutes each night with his dad since winning the school bee in January.
Alex is no stranger to the competition having competed in the Regional in 6th grade and placing 2nd in his school last year.
Alex is the son of Chad and Ashley Ottens of Lyndon.
I was in charge of the spelling bee in the PLT district for many years and was proud to have sent at least 3 of our students to the National Spelling Bee. It is wonderful that Alex Ottens is continuing the tradition. You did a “superlative” job, Alex!
It’s even more special to me because I had both Alex’s proud father and uncle, Chad and Troy Ottens, as students.
I also want to commend Alex’s coach Emily Higgins with whom I was privileged to co-teach when the middle school was moved to Tampico. Although Emily works with special ed kids and language arts is not her favorite subject, she restarted PLT’s involvement in the spelling bee program after it lapsed with my retirement. I am so happy that she has experienced the thrill of one of her “kids” qualifying to compete in Washington, D.C.
Good luck at Nationals, Alex! You are guaranteed to have the experience of a lifetime!