Hope everyone had a productive, informative Curriculum Night.
In the library, we had a lot of parents asking questions about Math Club, many more than last year. Some families have already signed up, and quite a few indicated interest in joining. That’s great!
We got some great questions from parents and students. Here are answers to a few of them.
When does the club start?
Wednesday, Sep 21st, 7pm: Parent Information Night. This is optional but should be informative for all. Parents only please! So we can get through the program efficiently.
(Parents who have been in the club before: It would be very valuable if you could join us, share your experiences with the new parents, and help answer their questions. Thank you!)
Wednesday, Sep 28th, 8am: Classes begin! We’ll help kids sign in the first time and direct them to the appropriate classrooms.
When is the first contest?
The first contests will be in November. The most intensive contest season runs from about February-April. Click here for the official math club schedule (as of this writing, MATHCOUNTS dates are not set, but everything else should be in there).
Yeah, that’s not really a question, but I know what you mean. We urgently need a 5th-grade coach as many of you know. Thank you for your understanding also as we hold off on 5th-grade registrations and payments. (Details and explanation here.) We will try to expedite the registration process for 5th-grade families as best we can, once a coach is identified.
Thank you for your efforts in recruiting a coach. We have a lead or two, but nothing solid. The math club season approacheth, so it’s getting urgent. Please spread the word, recruit, volunteer to coach!
Yes, this job could be done by two (or more people), but it’s tricky. One would need to be designated as the primary coach, and the others who should be able to cover for her/him for all remaining weeks of the year. The 5th-grade families deserve a full year of coaching for the fees they pay. And some issues (team composition, etc.) will need to have a particular coach making final decisions.
My child isn’t sure whether they want to join. What should I tell them?
Kids who (1) have a good grasp of the math material at their grade level and (2) are willing to put in effort to succeed typically get the best experience out of math club. It is challenging, but it is also super-fun also, for coaches and students.
Can my child not join the club, but sit in on club sessions?
The official PTSA policy is that only children who are members of the club can be in the classroom…. That said, if a parent already has at least one paying kid in the club and they wish to volunteer in a math-club class, they can bring their own kids to that class.
Unfortunately, a few years ago some parents took advantage of coaches to park siblings in the class without paying. This led to significant problems (worse than what you are thinking…). So we enforce this strictly now.
My child is not in 3rd grade yet. Is there a program for her/him?
Unfortunately, no there isn’t. There are no contests for 2nd grade or below, really. Some contests will unofficially allow students this young, but I generally recommend against it for a few reasons (that’s a different blog post).
We didn’t anticipate the high level of interest in a club for younger kids. This is something we could consider in a future year, though we would need significantly more volunteers than we have now, in order to pull it off. For now, please bookmark this website and stay tuned, because I’m hoping to add a lot more content that will be of interest to kids at every grade.