The 2017-2018 School Spelling Bee Study List released a few days ago.
For the most part, Scripps hasn’t changed much from previous years.
They’ve opted to keep words with spaces, hyphenated words, and words with alternate spellings, and it doesn’t seem like they will stop in the foreseeable future.
Perhaps what stands out most is the massive amount of plurals and adverbs. This is probably because of the fact that the words on this list are taken directly from a specific set of novels, and the syntax of some sentences requires the use of plurals and adverbs in place of their unconjugated forms.
Still, with words like brachiopods and dauntlessly in the 2017 National Preliminaries, Scripps has sent a clear message that they will continue to increase their usage of plurals and adverbs at all levels of competition. Make sure you understand the rules and know the suffixes involved in pluralization. This extends further than just adding -s at the end of a noun or changing -y to -ies. Take a look at the word on the new study list, crematoria, for example.
Most of the words are in common study lists, such as the Consolidated Word List, among others, with some exceptions in lichenous, Bollywood, Kilimanjaro, and pièce de résistance.
Overall, the words are of similar difficulty, if not slightly harder than those in previous years’ lists. Either way, you’ll need to memorize all 450 words to have a legitimate chance in most school bees. Good luck and happy studying!
Special thanks to Jake Lance for finding this list!