Deanna Watkins’s enrichment class of 17 students at Twin Lakes Elementary School will be awarded in a special assembly at 10:30 a.m. PT on Friday. Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Luna, representatives of Think Through Math, and officials from the Lakeland School District will attend the assembly to hand out awards and congratulate students for their hard work.
“Congratulations to Mrs. Watkins’s class at Twin Lakes Elementary School for taking home the Idaho Math Cup this year! I am so proud of the more than 30,000 students across Idaho who worked hard at school and at home, solving complex math problems during this month-long competition,” said Superintendent Luna. “The Idaho Math Cup is a great way for Idaho students to have fun with mathematics, stay engaged in the classroom, and improve their academic achievement.”
Through the Idaho Math Initiative, the state has contracted with Think Through Math, a web-based, interactive tutoring program, to provide supplemental mathematics to students in grades 3-12 both in the classroom and outside the school day. Think Through Math has an incentive program built in so as students solve more math problems, they earn points and can win prizes or turn their points into donations for charity.
During the month of the November, Idaho hosts the annual Idaho Math Cup competition, where students in 280 schools are encouraged to “do” more math while having fun at the same time. More than 30,000 Idaho students in 1,600 classrooms across the state had the opportunity to participate at school, during afterschool programs, and at home in November.
Mrs. Watkins’s class at Twin Lakes Elementary School solved more complex mathematics problems through Think Through Math than any other class in the state during this contest. Her students completed 1,644 math lessons, consisting of more than 30,000 problems! They spent more than 500 hours solving these math problems. Of those, about 200 hours were spent solving problems at home in the evenings or on the weekends.
“Third time’s a charm,” Watkins said. “My math class was 6th place in 2010, 4th place in 2011, and now finally, Idaho State Math Cup Champs! These kids have worked really hard especially at nights and on weekends. I am really proud of their efforts and persistence. This is a great bunch of kids, and I am really happy for them. Being called a ‘State Champ’ in any area is quite an accomplishment and happens very rarely for most people. These kids are only 10 and 11 and have reached a goal some never attain in a lifetime. I am very proud to be their teacher.”
As the state champion, Mrs. Watkins’s class will take home the coveted Idaho Math Cup trophy, a champion banner, and each student will receive certificates and t-shirts. Think Through Math also will be recognizing two runner-up classes and three additional award winners – Gurus of Giving, Holiday Heroes and Weekend Warrior – with a special class party prize package.
Mrs. Watkins’s class also will be recognized with the Guru of Giving and Evening/Weekend Warriors awards.
Many other Idaho classrooms competed for the Idaho Math Cup across the state and had great success.
- The first runner up for the Idaho Math Cup was Sherry Martin’s 6th grade class at Webster Elementary in Lewiston.
- The second runner up for the Idaho Math Cup was Bill Lavin’s 4th grade class at Pepper Ridge Elementary in Meridian.
- The Holiday Heroes Award, which is given for extraordinary work during the Thanksgiving break from November 21-25, has been awarded to: Amy Peterson’s Math Group at Owyhee Harbor Elementary, Boise; Linda Ehrsam, 3rd grade ALP Ramsey Elementary, Coeur d’Alene; and Karla Morton, 5th grade Cecil D. Andrus Elementary, Boise.
- The Gurus of Giving Award, which is given to classes that donated the most points to charitable organizations, has been awarded to: Deanna Watkins’ enrichment class, Twin Lakes, Rathdrum; William Lavin’s class at Pepper Ridge Elementary, Meridian; Jill Diamond’s class at Moscow Junior High, Moscow; Sue Peck’s class at Liberty Elementary, Boise.
- The Evening/Weekend Warrior Award, which is given to classes that worked the most outside of school hours, has been awarded to: Deanna Watkins’ enrichment class, Twin Lakes, Rathdrum; Sherry Martin’s class at Webster Elementary, Lewiston; William Lavin’s class at Pepper Ridge Elementary, Meridian; Amy Peterson’s Math Group at Owyhee Harbor Elementary, Boise; and Angela Troy’s class at Highlands Elementary, Boise.