2014 National Spelling Bee Contestants Look Befuddled & Bewildered — PHOTOS

Remember spelling tests? I do. Every week in elementary school my teacher would assign us a list of words that we would have to memorize. On Fridays, we would be tested on all of the words, and there was was always a word or two that tripped me up. I was thrilled when middle school put an end to spelling tests, but apparently not everyone found them quite so off-putting... hence the National Spelling Bee. This year the National Spelling Bee hosts 281 kids from ages 8 to 15, all competing for the title of Spelling Bee Champion. Naturally, everybody gets really into it. And why not? The ultimate prize is a $30,000 cash prize (helloooo, first year of college) a $2,500 savings bond and reference library from Merriam-Webster, and an Encyclopedia Britannica collection worth $1,200. Pretty awesome prizes, even if you do have to ace a whole lot of spelling tests to even be able to compete.

The Spelling Bee is a pretty big deal for these kids. They've studied tough words for hours and are bringing their A-game to the competition... and sometimes their A-game looks really, really intense. If you haven't been watching the Spelling Bee (it airs on ESPN) then you may have missed out on some of these fantastic faces. Here they are below, captioned with what I think is clearly going on in their heads.

"Umm, can you please repeat that?"

Seriously, that cannot be a real word.

"Ugh, bibliophile? Really?"

A challenge would be good.

"Thank God someone put a dictionary on the ceiling."

"Guys, a little help with this trophy."

It's great that I won and everything but... arms... getting... tired.

"Please don't make me spell that word."

My parents are here!

"Is it an F or a PH?!"

"Not impressed."

"Don't worry, I got this."

That trophy's locked down.


"When will this Bee be over?"

I want fro-yo.

Good luck to all these competitors! The Spelling Bee championship will air Thurs. at 8PM on ESPN.