Mathematician and “human computer” Shakuntala Devi said “Numbers have life, they’re not just symbols on paper”. Indeed, seeking the stories and information behind numerical data is a key skill in learning to interpret and contextualize our complex world. FAA students from 5th to 8th grade are diving deeper into the rich life of numbers in our math clubs.
Inspiring Learning through Engaging Projects
Working with teacher mentors Meena Negandhi and Dominique Amar, math club participants are given the time and tools to explore complex data and numbers through analysis and project work. They relish the opportunity to do math for fun and to participate in math activities for the sake of their own interest. However, the students certainly reap academic benefits as well, since their knowledge is being reinforced and strengthened by math club activities.
Our seventh and eighth grade club recently wrapped up a weeks-long project of their own devising, in which they researched, analyzed, and presented data about various countries’ GDPs. The current project for our fifth and sixth graders is to create riddles and problems for a real-life escape game, while the upper levels are concocting quiz questions for a math game that the entire middle school will enjoy.
Synthesizing knowledge in order to formulate problems draws on multiple learning strategies and requires increased mastery of the subject. While the students are enjoying creating challenges and riddles, they’re also bolstering their own knowledge and preparing themselves for heightened STEM challenges in school and in the real world beyond.
We are proud of our math club members and their mentors, and the ways that they are developing their passion for math as well as sharing it with their peers!