This Week's Contestant
|Theme:||Sears Secret Santa Sweepstakes|
On the actual day of filming, I nervously made my way down to the hotel lobby with my mom, grandma, and extra outfits in hand. Waiting in the lobby were the other contestants. I was so nervous and excited! In no time, the shuttle bus pulled into the hotel driveway and we all excitedly boarded the bus. We cheered, clapped, and compared notes about how we had made it on to the show, as the bus neared the Sony lot.
When we finally arrived on set, everyone was pumped! While we went through the rules of the game, the energy was running high. We all cheered each other on, as we practiced spinning the wheel, and soon it was time for the "real deal."
Being on the first show of the day, was both exhilarating and terrifying. Vanna had come into the contestant area earlier to cheer us on, but seeing her and Pat come around the corner for the first time made my heart just skip a beat! It was really happening! Then it was time to grab our buzzers for the toss-ups. At home, I normally stare blankly at these puzzles, but when it was time to film the show, I got them both! Who knew that my love of Justin Timberlake would actually help me win a $2000 toss-up!
Then we started to spin, and the rest was just a blur! While people had told me that the game went by quickly, I really couldn't believe how fast the game was played! In no time flat, they were asking who was with me in the audience, and those infamous letters (R, S, T, L, N, E) were appearing on the board. While I stared blankly at the puzzle, I tried to remember those same phonics patterns that we discussed at school when reading and writing. While I had no idea what the puzzle was, I called out letters that I thought could fit, and to my surprise, most of the board filled itself out! I was ready to solve it! Third grade phonics really did work! After eagerly shouting, "Brief Visit," Pat revealed that I had won $30,000!
Before coming on the show, my mom and I often joked about how we would jump around if I won anything in the bonus round (we even practiced once in the kitchen while watching at home), but today it was real, and while I'm sure we looked quite crazy, I was thrilled to be celebrating a big win with my family!
Not celebrating with my students was tough though. Every day people asked how I did, and I had to remind them that I was sworn to secrecy until November 15th. But now that it's out, I can say that the while the prizes are quite amazing, the experience of being on Wheel of Fortune was even more spectacular. Competing with such good-hearted contestants, and meeting Pat and Vanna were experiences that I will never forget!