Senior Cody Messina, junior Ben Girard, junior Derrick Lawrence, and sophomore Lydia Engel took top honors in CVA math teacher David Appleton’s annual math contest. The four winners each received a $25 iTunes gift card donated by the Central Valley Foundation.
More than students in Mr. Appleton’s Algebra 2/Trigonometry, precalculus and calculus met monthly for six months to test their math problem solving skills. Each half-hour quiz included just six questions covering geometry, algebra, trigonometry, and other advanced pre-calculus topics. Each correct answer earned the quiz-taker one point. The student with the most points in each grade won the contest. Girard and Lawrence each scored nine points, Messina and Engel scored 13.
To ensure a complete lack of bias, Appleton joined the New York Mathematics League and used their quizzes.
The competition is not like a classroom exam or test.
“You can’t just study your notes from class and do well. Some of the brightest students don’t do well, because it forces them to think in a different way under the pressure of competition,” said Appleton.