Saturday, April 12, 2008


. . . and Eagles Soar!

Well, there's football season and basketball season and track season. This must be geek season! Our boys (whom we are purposefully and proudly raising to be GEEKS) have participated in 2 science olympiads and one math competition so far this spring, and we have one more math competition two weeks from now.

First the science (saving the best - math - for last!):

This is Anthony's Science Olympiad Team: the Enochs Eagles. This competition took place in February. A good time was had by all. And now for more recent science:
Here's Caleb taking a break during his Science Olympiad today.
Here's Caleb's team. They did some pretty creative and cool stuff. One event Caleb was in was the "Can Race." They had to take a coffee can and punch holes in the bottom and the lid and then rig it up with an axle and washers and rubber bands and sticks to try to get it to roll, and they had to create it in such a way that it would roll a specific distance and then stop. He also took place in the paper and pencil "Starry, Starry Night" portion of the competition, so he and David have been pouring over astronomy books and checking out the night sky lately in preparation for that event.
This is Caleb at the awards ceremony. Notice the man in the grey suit in the distance in the middle of the picture. He'll come up again later.

Now for the MATH!!!!

Here is the Enochs team. Coach Kampen is hidden in the middle in the back. She's a very busy lady, and we're so grateful to her for giving of her time to make this possible for the students. A LOT of effort on the part of parents and faculty goes into supporting sports teams, but there is not the same level of willingness in general to support a math team - so, again, we are very grateful to Coach Kampen.
Above and below one of the Enochs Bomb Teams is pictured (actually both can be seen in the picture below). The Bomb is a really cool event that involves 5 students, but they can't talk to each other. Each has a different colored pen, and each begins with a different colored piece of paper. Each sheet has 5 problems on it. Competitors have to choose which single problem to do on the sheet. They can't start one then decide it's too hard and then begin another (hence the individually color-coded pens), so they have to make a wise choice in selecting the problem they are going to work. When they have finished their problem on the first sheet they pass the sheet counter-clockwise, and the next person has to choose one of the remaining 4 questions on the sheet and so on. The 25 questions on the test are composed of a mix of very challenging geometry, advanced algebra, precalculus and calculus problems. It's an EXTREMELY difficult test - most years there is no team that comes close to getting even half of the problems correct.
Above, the team is "chillin'" between events - a much needed break!
Here I am, wearing a "math shirt" - as requested by Anthony, but which I would have done anyway as befitted the occasion - conferring with Coach Kampen during break. (Please don't analyze that "sentence" grammatically!)
Here Anthony and teammate Onkar spend part of the break discussing problems from the Bomb.
Round 2 - the Blitz, which is an individual test of 45 questions. This event is composed of 4 tests, one for geometry students, one for advanced algebra students, one for precalculus students, and one for calculus students, each of those composed of very challenging problems as well - not just regular problems you'd do in class at each level. Enochs competed at only 3 levels, since they do not yet offer calculus.
I tried to get a picture to convey the scope of the competition. I couldn't get the whole thing in, but this gives some idea. Anthony earned first place in his level. In the above picture he is receiving his award from the superintendent of schools for the county, Tom Changnon. He is the guy in the grey suit I mentioned earlier. These competitions were both held today - a beautiful Saturday - in different cities, and the superintendent showed up for the awards ceremony for both and handed out the awards! I'm impressed!
Here is a picture of all the winners (1st, 2nd, 3rd and honorable mentions) for the advanced algebra level. Notice teammate Onkar - also a winner - third from the right in this picture.
This is one of Enochs' Bomb teams - also winners. I am SO PROUD of the Enochs team!! This is REALLY an accomplishment! Enochs is a new school - opened last school year with only freshmen and sophomores. This is the first time a team from Enochs has competed in this competition, and Enochs has no seniors - no calculus class. Remember that the Bomb has questions all the way through calculus. Yet, even with those strikes against them they came in second - only ONE POINT behind the first place team! They also won one or more trophies in EACH of the three individual levels they took part in - and two of those trophies were first place trophies! I realize this post is effusive to a huge degree, and I'm sorry if I've broken any rules of etiquette, but I think this is something to celebrate!

Way to soar Enochs Eagles!!!

Jacob's turn comes in 2 weeks at the middle school math competition.

1 comment:

Tony said...

Wow! I'm honored to be related to people this gifted. It sounds like a wonderful competition.

Great job Anthony!

Great job Caleb!

Go Jacob!

I hope you all had (will have) fun!