What are the chances of finding a room full of students eager for a math challenge?
If it’s Onslow County Schools then the chances are very good.This Spring, gathered in Clyde Erwin Elementary School’s Multi-purpose room, will be more than eighty 5th grade students representing each district elementary school excited to be part of MathCounts, a competition that tests students’ math prowess in subjects such as algebra, geometry, probability and more.
The competition is comprised of four rounds — two rounds are individual competitions and two rounds are team centered.
Sprint Round: focuses on speed and accuracy. Students have 40 minutes to complete 30 math problems without a calculator.
Target Round: focuses on problem solving and mathematical reasoning. Students receive four pairs of problems and have six minutes to complete each pair, assuming the use of a calculator.
Team Round: focuses on problem solving and collaboration. Students have 20 minutes to complete 10 math problems, assuming the use of a calculator.
Ciphering/Countdown Round: focuses on speed and accuracy. Students have a maximum of 60 seconds (at our local round) per problem without a calculator.
The students will tell you the competition makes math fun, in spite of their butterflies. The teams work with a mentor and meet often to sharpen their skills, support each other and collaborate to prepare for the competition.