Davis Elementary student wins prestigious national math award

Jade Ma, Davis Elementary student, recently earned the prestigious distinction as a winner in the national Noetic Learning Math Contest.
According to Donna Peters, math teacher and coach, the contest is an elementary math problem-solving contest held twice a year.
Peters said 12,630 young students, representing 649 teams across the country, participated in the spring contest. 
"The purpose of participating in the contest is to stimulate our students’ interest in math and to inspire them to excel in math," Peters said. "The contest results show that our students can rise to the occasion and can meet the challenge. It also demonstrates our students’ great math skills and talents."
Jade won the National Honor Roll title, awarded only to the top 10 percent of participating students in the country.
"Jade was very pleased. She blushes, smiles and nods when accolades come her way, but where others would react loudly, she just blushes and smiles," Peters said.
The Noetic contest is nationally-based in Overland Park, Kan.
Peters said she downloaded practice papers for her team, Peters' Patriots, to use prior to the actual competition.
"Each competing team has one opportunity to score well. The teachers post results, the Noetic organizers compile and publish the results, and the results were presented to us on May 1," she said.
Peters' entire class — minus one absent student — competed in the voluntary, challenging contest on April 12.
"There were 20 written math problems to be finished in 45 minutes. No calculators or manipulatives were allowed," she said.
Peters has maintained a rigorous practice schedule since August.
"I kept a class practice going all year with Math Olympiad
problems copied from two practice books," she said. "Students could work on them at school or at home, had to show all their work, and got stars on their papers until they finally got all five problems on the page done correctly. Then the student got to pick a prize from the 'jar'."
With no prior screening or pre-qualification, the contest was not limited to GT identified students. Peters said her class was just eager to compete.
"I am very proud of Jade and the team, not just for this win, but for the voracity that five of my students have held all year for high-level math competition. This entire year has been a joy for me, just being part of this amazing team, Peters' Patriots. I am looking forward to next year already," Peters added.