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Castle Pines seventh graders go to state spelling bee

Rocky Heights Middle School seventh graders (from left) Karen Yi, Shreya Nallapati, and Sophia Klokinis qualified for the state spelling bee, held last month. Yi and Nallapati advanced to the final round.

By Lisa Crockett; photo courtesy of the Klokinis Family

Sophia Klokinis, a 13-year-old seventh grader at Rocky Heights Middle School, along with her classmates Shreya Nallapati and Karen Yi, earned spots at the state spelling bee as three of nearly 300 top spellers in the state of Colorado. The girls, who took a written test at school and then participated in a school bee and a district bee to achieve the honor, went to the Colorado State Spelling Bee last month to compete with 285 spellers.

“We started the state bee by taking a written test, which took about an hour and a half,” said Klokinis. “It was a really fun experience to go to the bee.”

Klokinis didn’t make it past the written round, but Yi and Nallapati made it to the oral bee, along with 38 other contestants. Ultimately, a seventh grader from Denver named Himanvi Kopuri won the day and will represent Colorado at the national level.

“I didn’t stress about it too much this time,” said Klokinis. “I wanted to just keep it light, but I would like to go again next year, and I think this time I’ll study a little harder. It would be fun to win.” 



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