School-wide math contests are held on seven different Tuesday's throughout the year during lunch. These contests are part of a state contest, The California Math League. Hundreds of high schools throughout the state participate, both at a state and county level.
Approximately 500 M-A students participate each year in these 30-minute contests. In the contest, students solve six challenging math problems by applying high school-level concepts. Topics range from geometry through pre-calculus. A student can score from 0 to 6 on each contest. We encourage all students to participate. Most participants are enrolled in Geometry 9, A.S. Algebra II, Pre-Calculus, AP Calculus, and AP Statistics. The typical score on a contest can be a 1 or 2 with many students getting 0's due to the difficulty of the contest questions.
There is a multitude of benefits for participating students. Students receive extra credit in their respective math classes; they enjoy the challenge and competing with their peers. Each year we have approximately twenty winners in different contest categories. Students receive trophies and an award to their college application resume. Beyond the extra credit, awards, and the spirit of competition, there is a very practical benefit of contests. Math contests give students an opportunity to engage in independent thinking that cuts across the math curriculum. We believe that students who participate in math contests over their high school career become more skilled at taking standardized tests, like the SAT, math subject tests and AP math exams.
The American Math Contest is an international math contest held once a year in February during 5th and 6th period. This contest is by invitation only with participants chosen based on their California Math League performance and math abilities demonstrated in class. Top performers go on to the American Invitation Math Exam (AIME), a three-hour exam. Typically 5 – 10 M-A students participate.
The math department is very proud of our students' contest accomplishments and we are looking forward to another great year. Top performers who are returning in 2014-2015 include Jacob Feiler, Thatcher Freeman, Andrew Yates, DanielLaPorte and Katrina Wijaya.