By Eduardo Barraza
November 28, 2016
(Gilbert, AZ) -- A group of six-graders from Towne Meadows Elementary is making their school and teacher proud after an outstanding participation in a regional math championship.
The students in teacher Shari Murphy’s math class earned third and fourth places in the team category of the Math Championship.
The November 18 contest was organized byMathleague.org, which sponsors a number of school contests throughout the school year.
“We had a very intense contest,” said Murphy. “We had three individual contests, and there were [also] team contests. Our school won the third place championship, which combines the individual scores with the team scores.”
In addition, three Towne Meadows students were recognized for their performance in the individual category.
Alexander Bumgarner won second place, and Treyjen DuPont earned 5th place. They both received a trophy. Another student, Brigdon Godard, received a ribbon for winning 9th place.
Towne Meadows participated with a total of eight students divided in two different teams. The contest only gives trophies for the first three places, but the school also won 4th place in the team category.
Murphy said the students in this math class are highly gifted. They are in 6th grade but are taking 8th grade math, and next school year they will be taking high school math.
She said she feels proud of her class not only because they won the trophies, but more because she saw how hard they worked in the contest.
“I was so proud and happy to see the way they worked together. If one of them got a different answer, the way they challenged each other, and talked about it and decided who was right,” said Murphy.
The teacher credits her students’ success in the competition to collaboration and teamwork.
“They were really working together as a team; it wasn’t one person getting all the answers. They were all involved.”
Math can be fun
Murphy said she feels very privileged to work with this group of gifted students.
“I think these children are going to really go far in their futures. I can’t wait to see where the future takes each of them.”
Since Murphy also has her eyes on the present and envisions other kids joining her class, she has a piece of advice for them: Make sure you understand the basics of math.
“If they are younger, they just need to do the simple things like memorizing multiplication tables, the things that come first,” said Murphy.
Murphy thinks that students need to realize that as math gets more complicated, it gets more fun actually.
“Math can be fun because it’s like everyday; you are solving puzzles, and you are able to say, wow, I took this complicated thing and made it into something simple.”
Students who are part of this gifted math class and who participated in the contest are: Machaela Baudanza, Alexander Bumgarner, Treyjen DuPont, Annie Fitzgerald, Brigdon Godard, Matthew Gregory, LLeyton Miller and Michael Teague.