Math competitions engage students outside of class

Cristina Jercan

Monthly math competitions for students in all grade levels is allows students the opportunity to think critically and evaluate math problems

Senior Maxim Grinfeld works on a handout during a monthly math competition.
Senior Maxim Grinfeld works on a handout during a monthly math competition.

outside of class.  

“It just gave me experience on how to do stuff on a time limit,” freshman Michael Chidbachian said.

For many students, math is a challenging subject that they might not be able to grasp and understand in time to keep up with the class. For other students, math is a simple subject that they can easily excel in.

“We are very happy to have all the students come for whatever reason they come,” math teacher Leslie Hicks said.

The first two math contests were composed of a short test where students worked individually and their scores were based off of their correct answers.

The third contest is a team contest where teams of 2-4 students receive instructions for one big problem.  The group will collaborate in order to reach an answer and turn all their work in at the end of the week.  For this contest, the teams will be scored based off of their thinking process, communication and collaboration, not to mention the answer they got.

“To have students take risks and be comfortable taking risks is our purpose,” math teacher Daniel  Cramer said.

The purpose for these contests is to have students practice their math skills in order for them to see what they need to work and improve on. The contests will show students that they can still learn a lot even if they don’t know the answer right off the top of their head according to Hicks. It’s a way for students to practice math while not knowing they are actually learning and reviewing.  

“I hope that the math competitions will help students see math as fun and will help them see math as something they can get better at over time,” Hicks said.