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Rockdale Magnet Math Team wins fourth place in Team Scramble

CONYERS — Rockdale Magnet School for Science & Technology Math Team has earned fourth place in Team Scramble, a national math competition administered by National Assessment & Testing.

The first major competition of the year was a race where the team had to answer a series of 100 questions in 30 minutes. Coach Chuck Garner prepared the students by ensuring that they had the ability to decipher which questions to solve and which to skip. The competition also called for a significant amount of teamwork, having students allocate questions amongst themselves based on their personal strengths to maximize their team’s score.

“Led by Dr. Garner, the Magnet Math Team has a long history of strong competitive performance having been classification State Champions 10 times and Overall State Champions three times (in 2004, 2005, and 2013). We are extremely proud of their recent national performance and congratulate Dr. Garner and all of the students on the team for this outstanding accomplishment,” said Rockdale County Public Schools Community Relations Director Cindy Ball.

According to National Assessment & Testing, the Team Scramble competition has more complex questions than those found in most other math competitions. For example, one question from this year’s competition involved finding the maximum possible value of an expression that could be constructed using particular numerals and operations. Other problems included solving the expected gain in a unique casino game and finding the area a horse can graze around a triangular barn.

Rockdale Magnet’s Math Team plans to participate in the 2013 Ciphering Time Trials on Dec. 12 and the 2014 Four-by-Four Competition on Jan. 30, both hosted by National Assessment & Testing. The contests feature 10 rounds in which students have three minutes to answer questions. However, Ciphering Time Trials requires students to work individually on three problems per round, while Four-by-Four gets its namesake from allowing teams of four students to solve four problems in each round.

Seattle-based National Assessment & Testing administers math competitions for high schools across the country via email. Contests are held in a variety of formats including individual and team tests. An array of difficulties are administered as well, ranging from an easier 100 problems in 30 minutes to a more complicated 15 problems in one week.