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Campus team wins Math Field Day

It was time to prove what they already knew. Hundreds of math students were jam-packed in a room the size of a hotel lobby, a wave of anxiety was apparent on many faces.

The campus math teachers brought 42 students to Fresno State to compete in 5th annual Math Field Day on April 22. Yet they were undaunted that large schools like Clovis West brought almost the same number of students (48).

?I like Math Field Day because it gives students a chance to think outside the box and to succeed,? math teacher Mike Fenton said. ?These tests are actually designed in a way that even the seniors in calculus will not get them all correct.?

However at the end of the day, the campus math team won first place in the Small High Schools Division, placing among others ahead of University High. Additionally, freshman Benjamin Wright took third place in the 9-10 Mad Hatter contest.

?I think Benjamin winning third place is awesome and it gives other students a chance to strive for what he achieved,? Fenton said. ?I hope that next year we will have more students prepared to win more of the single games.?

When asked whether he was king of Math Field Day, Wright just smiled.

?Winning Mad Hatter doesn?t really matter to me, but I think it is pretty cool to be the only single winner on campus,? Wright said. ?Overall it was a fun time and I am going to go next year because I love Mad Hatter.?

Mad Hatter is an individual game where speed is the ultimate winning factor and junior Matthew Shattuck placed fourth. Students not only participated in Mad Hatter, but also in the game NIM. Nine people made it to the second round of Nim and five made it to the top twelve.

Finally, Leap Frog requires two students to work on a test for an hour and then switch. Seniors Gary Darakjian, and Aaron Gulack were the top two students who placed in the partner test.

Each student competes in one of three different contests: Leap Frog, a ?tag team? game where one student answers questions and the other corrects mistakes; a variation on the popular math game, NIM, where students compete one-on-one in a challenging mind game; and Mad Hatter.

It became relevant to junior Haley Tamberi when she competed in Leap Frog with junior Heather Neel that even when there is a partner to rely on, the competition was still remnant.

?It was really hard; I only knew four out of the 10 problems,? Tamberi said. ?I finished in 10 minutes out of the full hour, and then started drawing on my test and the teacher started laughing at me.?

Math Field Day gives students a chance to discern what they know and what still need to be learned.

For more information, go online at www.csufresno.edu/math/.

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