Home      Store      Contact      Site Map   

Spelling Bee Lists for Upper Grades

8th grade spelling bee list

Are you a teacher looking for spelling bee lists to use in your next classroom competition? Or perhaps you're a parent or student trying to "study ahead" on some typical spelling bee words. Either way, this list should help! I've carefully compiled this list after researching a number of online and in-print resources. 

This page features 120 spelling bee words for  8th grade. It's a great study list for students in 6th, 7th and 8th grades. Use the links below to find my lists for other grades.

Printable spelling bee list for 8th grade

depth forgetting example educate
entire horizon freight earliest
threat relieve muscle meant
exchange securing obedient unsanitary
leisure crypt supervisor persuade
glamorous optimistic envious controversy
deficiency schedule characteristic environment
amusement criticize venom awkward
arrangement considerable barometer vulnerable
mercenary plaintiff omitted deterrent
cameos malicious obscure propeller
perceived taboo technology surmise
internally specific protein criminal
precipitate forgery unbelievable unduly
annoyance vessel insufficient capably
belligerent amnesty snobbery applicant
anxious fashionable machinery laboratory
shuddering sacrifice fibrous escalator
privilege burglary melodious embargo
outrageous rectangular honorary minimize
contrary passageway vertigo malady
lucrative extraordinary abstain procrastinate
serviceable parliament necessity recurrent
ominous permeate religious occurred
prestigious scandalized voracious universal
transient meticulous personification inevitable
vigilant interrogate malignant benevolent
consequence unenforceable nostalgia omnipotent
vivacious precocious indulgence vulnerable
vacillate inconvenience potpourri ubiquitous
phenomenon caricature surveillance metamorphosis

You may wish to adjust our list for your specific group of students. Feel free to use additional easier words, or insert some more difficult ones.

Important Tips

hand holding a microphone

1. Give students lots of practice in oral spelling before competitions. Ask students to spell words frequently aloud, even from their seats, for a bit of "performance" practice.

2. Be sure to use spelling bee words in sentences when quizzing students. For instance, bizarre, should be clarified so it won't be confused with bazaar:  The dog's behavior was so bizarre, the veterinarian knew it was gravely ill.

3. One set of tricky spelling words may be those that contain "extra" vowels, vowels that form their own syllable, or vowels that are frequently replaced with incorrect vowels. Troublesome words include: 'ancient

  • coupon
  • disastrous
  • familiar
  • marriage
  • separate
  • temperature
  • vacuum
  • vegetable

One of the best ways to learn some of these these words is to over-emphasize the problematic vowel when pronouncing the words. For instance, teach your student to say: 

  • vegetable:  Say  "vej-EH-tuh-buhl"
  • familiar: Say  "fuh-mil-E-yer"   or  "fuh-mil-I-yer"
  • vacuum: Say "vac-you-oo-um" 

We also have spelling bee lists for:

2nd grade
 3rd  grade
4th grade
5th grade
6th grade
7th grade

Spelling Bee Words List with pronunciations and meanings from www.spelling-words-well.com

NEW! Spelling Bee Words List - 25 Challenging Spelling Bee Words with Pronunciations and Meanings! Teachers, use these for classroom warm-ups or competitions. Students, learn these before your next competition! 

You may also enjoy this list of 25 Hard Spelling Bee Words and Definitions. This is required learning for anyone who wants to excel in an upper grade spelling competition. Please take time to learn the word meanings, along with the spellings!

Worksheets for More Spelling & Vocab Practice

Silhouette of a salute

At-TEN-tion!  Complete the spellings of words with the letters TEN on this fun English worksheet. Great vocabulary and spelling practice! For grades 4-8. 

Croaky the frog

Croaky Meets the Plumber and Extra Letters Worksheets: Students chose the correctly spelled words to complete an interesting story or eliminate extra letters to solve a word puzzle. Based on our sixth grade spelling word list.

Armadillo 8th grade puzzle worksheet

8th Grade Worksheet featuring an ARMADILLO! Students must form a word for each clue using only the letters in ARMADILLO, then place the words correctly into the diagram. Great vocab and spelling practice!

Wacky Weather Cryptogram Worksheet: Puzzle page for upper grades. Includes instructions so students, parents or teachers can make more cryptogram puzzles with any word list. Grades 6-9.

Teachers: Need Another Spelling Bee List?

The Spelling Bee Toolbox eBooks

Our Spelling Bee Toolbox eBooks are comprehensive resources for anyone who wants a simple way to put together a classroom, all-school or multi-school spelling bee. 

Each eBook contains 600 words and sentences, rules, award certificates, organizational tips, student helps and much more. We also offer additional sets of 600 spelling bee words and sentences for those who don't need all the other bells and whistles. Also, see our 100 Difficult Words for Spelling Bees that includes definitions, pronunciations, sentences and more.

The Colossal Spelling Bee Word List for Grades 3-5

Or use our Monumental Bee Word Lists, if you're holding a competition in which you require definitions, parts of speech, language of origin and sentences. In each eBook, you'll find 400 all-new words!


open dictionary page

If you're looking for more words to study, see our list of frequently misspelled words. Or take our Dictionery/dictionary quiz!


Q: Where can I find high-quality spelling bee lists?

A: Scripps Spelling Bee has resources at https://spellingbee.com/. Many more free spelling bee lists can be found here at https://www.spelling-words-well.com/  At this site, lists for grades 2-8 are compiled by a veteran teacher and educational author.

Q: What tips can I give students who are preparing to compete in spelling bees?

A:  1) Students should have lots of practice spelling orally.

2) Students should learn words in context. They should listen carefully as words are used in sentences so they can distinguish between the words "capital" and "capitol" for example.

3) Students should practice challenging words: those with troublesome vowel combinations, silent consonants, and unfamiliar words.

Q: Are there any FUN ways to practice spelling bee words?

A: YES! Students can play spelling bee games, and solve crosswords, word scrambles, cryptograms and almost any kind of word play game. All of these will help kids learn and remember how to spell tricky words!

Sign Up Here for My Free Newsletter

Author Ann Richmond Fisher

Ann Richmond Fisher is a longtime published educational writer, a former classroom teacher and a former homeschool teacher. Ann's spelling bee resources, graded spelling word lists, spelling games, worksheets, and other language arts resources have become respected around the globe since she launched Spelling-Words-Well in 2010.

Ann is also the creator of www.word-game-world.com.

  1. Spelling Words Well
  2. Bee Words
  3. 8th Grade Spelling Bee Words


Spelling Words Well logo

Think-a-Spell eBook from www.spelling-words-well.com

Think-a-Spell eBook: 365 Brain Teasers and Spelling Challenges for Ages 10 to Adult  

300 Spelling Bee Word Lists by Grade Level

 300 Spelling Bee Words by Grade Level, with definitions, sentences and languages

Spelling Bee Toolbox eBooks

Spelling Bee Toolboxes for Grades 3/5 and 6/8   All the resources you need for a successful bee! 

Mammoth Spelling Bee Word Lists

Mammoth Spelling Bee Word Lists    with sentences, definitions, and languages

Monumental Spelling Bee Word Lists

Monumental Spelling Bee Word Lists with definitions, sentences and languages

Young Spellers Spelling Bee Word List

Young Spellers Spelling Bee Word List for Grades 1 & 2 

100 Difficult Spelling Bee Words eBooks

100 Difficult Spelling Bee Words, Definitions & Sentences  My toughest lists, for upper grades and adults!

600 Spelling Bee Words & Sentences

600 Spelling Bee Words & Sentences for Gr 3/5 & 6/8 Extra words & sentences at two levels

Anyword Spelling Practice eBooks from www.spelling-words-well.com

AnyWord Spelling Practice Series   Fun Worksheets, games & prompts that work with almost ANY spelling words!

101 Word Play Puzzlers eBook

101 Word Play Puzzlers   Discover the FUN of letters & words as you solve each unique puzzle. Great vocabulary & spelling practice!