For the first time, all four Lakota junior high schools sent teams of 6-10 students to the Feb. 25 regional MathCounts competition at the University of Cincinnati. Forty teams from schools throughout the greater Cincinnati area competed.
MathCounts is designed for students in grades 6-8, and requires teams to have at least five meetings before entering the competition.
"We were very excited to give the students this opportunity," said Patty Piron, Gifted Support Advisor for grades 7-12. "I love to see students want to go over and beyond in their learning. We emphasized that this was a safe environment where they can try new problem-solving strategies and learn from each other as they work to solve problems that are more difficult and include content they may not have been exposed to yet. When students don't have to worry about their grade being affected, they feel more free to explore and attempt new things."
The Lakota top scorer was Izaia Rayburn from Plains Junior. He placed 18th overall, which put him in the top 4 percent of participants, and he earned the chance to move on to the state competition.
The University of Cincinnati hosted a second math competition on March 4 for junior high and high school students called the UC Math Bowl. The event, in its 32nd year, brings together over 80 teams from the Cincinnati area to work collaboratively to explore interesting and challenging math problems. Two Lakota teams participated.
Hopewell Junior sent Johnathan Lemma, Hayley Huon, Caitlyn DiFillipo, Saad Khan, Magnus Miller, and Yashmit Deshpande to the competition. Lakota West's team included: Trevor Bresnahan, Alex Evert, Robert Wetzler, Jacob Terwilleger, and Garrett Lindsey.
Photo: The top performers from each of Lakota's junior high schools included Izaia Rayburn (Plains), Emma Grimm (Liberty), Emra Avdic (Hopewell), and William Comer (Ridge).
Teams were judged on the strategies they used to solve the problems; Lakota West received a superior rating, Hopewell Junior's work earned one good rating and one superior rating.