On February 5th, approximately 30 students from the Waldorf School of Garden City participated in the annual American Mathematics Competitions (AMC) contest. This contest has grown from a single city-wide competition in New York City in 1950, organized by the local section of the Mathematical Association of America, to a sequence of contests given around the country. In 2012, over 413,000 students from over 5,100 U.S. and international schools competed for school, regional and national awards in this contest. The contest, which covers high school mathematics, spurs interest in mathematics and develops talent through the excitement of friendly competition at problem solving in a timed format.
Among our Waldorf students, sophomores Jonathan Gill, Deepjot Singh Sohal and Sheppard Somers won first-, second- and third- place awards, respectively, in the AMC 10 and Rui Zhu (junior), Caleb Yuan (senior) and Joohee Jung (senior), won first-, second- and third- place awards, respectively, for the AMC 12.
"Zhu was in the top 1% of the national scores," said High School Math Teacher Michael Gentile. "This qualified him to take the American Invitational Mathematics Exam (AIME) on March 14th. If he is a top scorer, he will qualify to take the USA Mathematical Olympiad!"
High School Math Teacher Michael Gentile went on to say that the real rewards come from challenging each student in math. The problems on the contest are hard, but designed to be within reach. Just by participating in the contest, students feel accomplishment because these problems are meant to be more challenging than routinely encountered in regular math courses.
"I strongly believe Mr. Gentile’s critical thinking approach to math and the Waldorf School’s encouragement of outside-of-the-box thinking helped me to do well on the AMC this year," said Deepjot Singh Sohal.
The Waldorf School of Garden City is a college preparatory day school teaching early childhood through grade 12. Students take the American Mathematics Contest (AMC) in school during the month of February. For more information about the AMC test visit: www.amc.maa.org.
In addition to the academic rigor of daily math classes in algebra, geometry, pre-calculus and calculus, high school students at the Waldorf School also experience Main Lesson courses in special math topics. Main Lessons are seminar-type classes that are central to the high school student’s academic experience and are unique to Waldorf education. These courses meet every day and focus on a specific topic, in a defined sequence, for 4 week blocks of time. Among the Math Main Lessons offered are permutations and combinations, projective geometry, and conic sections. The extended length of the Main Lesson enables students to approach the topic through many modalities, adding depth and breadth to their understanding.