Teachers and classmates of Fresno sixth grader who won Scripps National Spelling bee celebrating

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- For 36 rounds 12-year-old Ananya Vinay seemed unfazed, even unimpressed with the words she had to spell. And the final one-- appeared to be the easiest of them all.

The sixth grader was beaming this morning on Good Morning America sitting next to her Scripps National Spelling Bee trophy. Back home at her elementary school friends could hardly contain their excitement.

"She's just so dedicated, spelling is her life, I'm just so glad for her," said Mia Uller, friend.

This was Ananya's second time competing nationally. After failing to break into the top 50 last year she came back this year with a vengeance and a fool-proof strategy.

"She definitely has a procedure, a method she uses, she even used it at the district test-- all those things," said Ken Engel, Spelling Team Advisor.

Friends said Ananya's victory did not come easy-- she may looked poised on stage but it is a result of years of non-stop training.

"Weekends, she'll do it, vacations, she'll be like I studied spelling my entire vacation it was so much fun," said Soraya Abedi, friend.

Ananya is taking home over $40,000 in cash and prizes. She's also embarking on a media tour, so teachers don't expect to see her back until the last day of school when they hope to throw her a party.
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