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Everest Academy is a ministry of Everest Family Church in Hayden. We offer freedom along with quality resources, information, activities and support to those homeschooling in Alabama. We believe that the parent has the best interests of their children at heart. We believe that the parent is the first and only teacher that a child needs. In keeping with this philosophy, we wish to be a very hands-off church "cover" school and allow the parent to lead and guide their children in the direction and at the pace they feel is best suited to their children. We ask only for what the law requires while offering support along with quality resources to aid families in their efforts.

2017 Alabama Spelling Bee Info

Please direct any questions to:
Laura Ann Tipps
(256) 504-2768

Hello, homeschoolers!

Here's a reminder to register your students ASAP to participate in the homeschool spelling bee! If you are not a part of Cornerstone Christian Homeschool, Shades Mountain Independent Church Academy, Covenant Christian Academy, or Lions Gate Christian School, you need to be registered with my group, Learning at Home! 

For those of you who are tempted to delete this email because spelling isn't your student's best subject: Even if spelling isn’t your student’s strong suit, you shouldn't necessarily let that deter you. The spelling bee is a great way to learn skills that will help them improve, not to mention its benefits in areas like self-confidence, healthy competition, and friendship. It changed my life for the better, and I’d love to help your students get the most out of this experience!

For those who have already registered with Learning at Home, I have one quick note: I asked for the district you are closest to/plan to attend just to get a rough idea of how many students we will have at each bee. This does not count as your district bee registration. Soon, you will receive an email with instructions for contacting your district coordinator to register for her bee. Dates and times are below.

Let's review how the homeschool spelling bee system works!

If you don’t know me, I’m Laura Ann Tipps (formerly Brown), and I am the Alabama Homeschool Spelling Bee Coordinator. I competed in spelling bees from 4th to 8th grade, advancing to the state spelling bee all five years and to the National Spelling Bee in 2004 and 2005. Since then, I have volunteered at all levels (except National) as a judge, pronouncer, and coordinator. I LOVE the spelling bee, and I am passionate about getting homeschoolers involved and helping them succeed!

Homeschoolers start at what’s called the district level of competition. Any eligible homeschooler (read about eligibility here) is welcome to participate in these bees as long as they are registered with a school group that is enrolled with Scripps—we’ll get to that in a moment.

We have four district bees: Huntsville, Birmingham, Auburn/Montgomery, and Mobile/Baldwin. The dates and times are as follows:

January 13, 2017
Registration at 1pm, bee begins at 1:30pm
Grace Heritage
1345 Annalue Drive; Auburn, AL 36830
$5 registration fee per family

January 19, 2017
Registration at 9:30am, bee begins at 10am
Life's Journey Church (Covenant Christian Academy)
926 Weatherly Road SE; Huntsville, AL 35803
$2 registration fee per speller

January 23, 2017
Registration at 1pm, bee begins at 1:30pm
Robertsdale Church of Christ
18250 Pennsylvania Street; Robertsdale, AL 36567
$5 registration fee per speller

January 25, 2017
Registration at 9:30am, bee begins at 10am
Shades Mountain Independent Church Academy
2281 Old Tyler Road; Hoover AL, 35226
Registration fee $2 per speller; if possible, bring finger food (no peanuts) and/or a drink to share for fellowship after the bee

The top three spellers from each of these district bees then advance to  our Homeschool County Bee, which will be held at Community Presbyterian Church in Moody, AL on Saturday, February 4, 2017 (time is TBD but we will start right after noon). So why is it called a “county” bee? Homeschoolers only get one representative at the Alabama Spelling Bee, so we are considered a “county” just like Jefferson, Etowah, and all the rest.  

Our county winner advances to the Alabama Spelling Bee, and we wish them well and support them as they compete to move on to the National Spelling Bee from there!

So, how can my student participate in one of those four district bees?

As I mentioned earlier, in order to participate in a district spelling bee, you must be part of a school that is enrolled with Scripps. Enrollment is very expensive and not cost-effective for most groups and co-ops.

To remedy this, we created a group called Learning at Home. Its sole purpose is to facilitate spelling bee participation for homeschool families. Without it, families whose school groups did not enroll would face enrollment on their own. At $145 for the early-bird special, that’s extremely impractical!

When you register with me through Learning at Home, you receive the study materials Scripps has released for the year. These are basically essential for advancement in the spelling bee.

As a member of Learning at Home, you will also receive curated study tips and FAQs from me! My job is to help homeschoolers get involved and be successful in the Scripps spelling bee system.

Again, if you are not a part of Cornerstone Christian Homeschool, Shades Mountain Independent Church Academy, Covenant Christian Academy, or Lions Gate Christian School,you need to be registered with my group, Learning at Home! 

How do I register?

It’s super easy to register with Learning at Home and get started on your 2017 spelling bee journey! All I need is some registration information and an $8 fee per family. This means that, no matter how many students you have who meet the eligibility requirements, all you pay is $8. This small fee helps me recoup the $145 Scripps enrollment fee. I do all of this on a volunteer basis.

Once I have both your registration information and your $8 fee, I will send you the study materials and study tips via email so that your students can begin studying right away--the sooner, the better! Here is the information I need:

1.     Name of Parent or Legal Guardian
2.     Name(s) of Speller(s) in Household
3.     Grade Level(s) and Age(s) of Speller(s) in Household
4.     Phone Number
5.     Homeschool Group/Covering/Co-op
6.     Which District You are Closest to/Plan to Attend (This does not register you for that bee; it just helps me get an idea of a head count!)

My preferred method of payment is PayPal. The following link has my information and the amount plugged in already: https://www.paypal.me/LauraAnnTipps/8.

If you need to send a check instead, please let me know and I will provide you with a mailing address.

The deadline to register with Learning at Home is December 31, 2016. After that, registration will be available until the date of your selected district bee for an increased price of $10.

My final plea:

Please share this email, or even just my contact information, with your homeschool groups, co-ops, friends, and neighbors. I believe in the spelling bee and its benefits, and I would love to expand participation again to have our BIGGEST year yet! 

I'd also love to be put in contact with your homeschool group administrators or others who distribute this type of information. I can send fliers that can be hung up, and these emails can be forwarded far and wide. :) 

Feel free to contact me with any and all questions about the spelling bee! I hope you’ll all consider getting involved. 

Laura Ann Tipps