« The Ed Department's Mike Smith Talks About 'Common Standards' | Main | A New Kind of Online Dictionary? »

A Math Challenge on a Timely Topic ($)

Businesses, philanthropies, and other organizations have been staging math and science competitions and contests for years as a way to motivate students to take on independent projects and have their work judged by experts in the field.

Schools and the Stimulus

If you're interested in a competition with a theme pulled from the day's headlines, have a look at the Moody's Mega Math Challenge 2009, known as "M-3." This year, participating teams from schools around the country were given the following mission:

—Determine which elements of the $787 billion economic-stimulus plan will produce the greatest increases in employment;
—Figure out how quickly the money could have an impact on the economy; and
—Evaluate whether a second stimulus package is needed.

The contest is sponsored by the philanthropic arm of Moody's, the global financial and research firm, and it's sponsored by the Society for Industrial and Applied Math, or SIAM. Students are competing for college scholarship awards valued at between $2,500 and $20,000, which will be divided up evenly among team members.

Students were encouraged to use resources from authoritative sources on federal spending, such as the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the Congressional Budget Office, and the White House Council of Economic Advisers. The deadline for submitting answers was last week.

The Moody's competition traditionally focuses on financial and economic issues. The 2008 challenge question asked students to examine the economic implications of replacing traditional gas with ethanol. In 2007, students were asked about a hypothetical investment portfolio. My question for readers: Of the other school math competitions out there, how many of them center on financial or budgetary themes? Is the focus of these competitions changing, given the issues of the day?


You must be logged in to leave a comment. Login |  Register
Ground Rules for Posting
We encourage lively debate, but please be respectful of others. Profanity and personal attacks are prohibited. By commenting, you are agreeing to abide by our user agreement.
All comments are public.

Follow This Blog

Advertisement

Most Viewed on Education Week

Categories

Archives

Recent Comments

  • Linda: My problem with homework is they give too much and read more
  • Seo Article Writer: Hello I just see your site when I am searching read more
  • Car Insurance Guy: Ah!!! at last I found what I was looking for. read more
  • cyptoreopully: Hey there everyone i was just introduceing myself here im read more
  • Connie Wms: Good grief. We have gone round and round forever with read more