Plenty of adults would struggle to spell "colloquial," "odori" and "sevruga." Five-year-old Edith Fuller made it look like a cakewalk. An early crowd favorite, Edith beat out about 50 competitors age 5 to 14 at the Green Country Regional Spelling Bee in Tulsa, Okla., on Saturday, making her the youngest person ever to qualify for the Scripps National Spelling Bee, reports KJRH. Her winning word was "jnana"—which refers to the acquisition of knowledge through meditation and study in Hinduism—though she afterward used a less tricky word to describe her emotion: "I feel thankful," said Edith, who is home-schooled.
Edith's parents say they discovered her talent for spelling last summer when she correctly spelled "restaurant" without having been taught the word, reports Tulsa World. "We knew there was something special there," says mom Annie Fuller. To prepare for the competition, Edith looked up words she couldn't spell correctly, allowing her to "learn about different countries and cultures and different kinds of food," Fuller says. "I'm proud she held her own." A rep says Scripps officials "look forward to welcoming Edith Fuller and all of our more than 280 national spellers" in Washington, DC, per ABC News. The competition kicks off May 28. (Last year's big winner was pretty young himself.)