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MATH OLYMPIADS

Math Olympiads is a program to stimulate enthusiasm for problem solving and mathematics led by Dr. Jason Frand, a retired professor and assistant dean at the UCLA Anderson School of Management.

November 14, 2006 Culver City News

November 16, 2006 Culver City Observer

Linwood Howe School “Mathletes” Hit Winning Numbers in Olympics

by Mike Cohen, Reporter

Thirty Linwood Howe elementary “Mathletes” earned solid scores in the first round of the Mathematics Olympiad held this week at the school. The international competition attracts 150,000 fourth through eighth graders from 5,000 worldwide teams.

Dr. Jason Frand, a retired professor and assistant dean at the UCLA Anderson School of Management, is the volunteer coach and coordinator of the program.

“For their first ever competition, these youngsters performed beyond our expectations. We are proud of their achievements,” said Frand, a Culver City resident, who noted his goal is to show the students how mathematics can be fun and exciting.

The overall goals of the program are to stimulate enthusiasm for problem solving and mathematics, deepen understanding of mathematical concepts, and explore concepts that might not otherwise be encountered, according to Frand. The focus is on critical thinking and not arithmetic skills.

A sample 90-second question might be: “The pages of a book are numbered from 1 to 200. How many times does the digit 7 appear?” A recent inquiry was, “Using four lines through a circle, what is the largest number of regions you can create within the circle?” Answers are at the end of this article.

Resulting from a meeting last spring between Frand and Linwood Howe principal Rosalind LaBriola, the Math Olympiad program (www.moems.org), which is held in 50 states and 25 countries, began this fall at the Culver City public elementary school as an enrichment program.

About 10 students from each fifth grade class taught by Zach Bastoky, Karen Burkenheim, and Greg Holman meet with Burkenheim for math class each day. The math enrichment sessions led by Frand are held during math time twice a week.

Answers: The digit 7 appears 40 times in the first 200 pages of a book. A circle with four lines makes as many as 11 regions.

Dr. Jason Frand