KANSAS CITY, Mo. — The Kansas City area is sending four spellers to compete in the 2021 Scripps National Spelling Bee. In this 2021 Spelling Bee profile, we spoke with Mac Northcraft, of Peculiar.
Mac, 11, said he has been preparing for the bee by practicing for 20 to 30 minutes every other day.
“We try and memorize most of the words and practice the language of origin and figure out if it’s ‘f’ or ‘ph’ or like rules like that,” Mac said.
Nate Northcraft, Mac’s father, said his son has always been good at spelling.
“He picks up on words that he doesn't know how to spell. After hearing them a couple of times, usually, he's got them down,” Nate Northcraft said. “And then if he gets one that he doesn't know, usually he’s pretty good at giving it his best shot trying to figure it out.He's doing a great job we're really proud of him.”
A sixth grader at Ray-Pec East Middle School, Mac said he’s a little nervous about the bee because he knows the words will be more difficult, but the virtual components will benefit him.
“If it was in person, I [would] probably be a lot more nervous," Mac said. "But since we’re doing virtual, I think it helps me calm down my nerves."
Until he steps on the virtual stage, Mac plans to keep practicing so he can be prepared for anything.