Michelle Dover: Kudos to Steamboat’s MathCounts team | SteamboatToday.com

Michelle Dover: Kudos to Steamboat’s MathCounts team

Problem: Taye runs one lap around the base of Howelson in six minutes. Will runs one lap around the same loop in eight minutes. If Taye and Will start together and run in the same direction around the loop, how many laps will Taye have completed the first time he and Will are together again at the starting point?

Answering word problems like this is what the Steamboat Springs Middle School MathCounts team enjoys and excels at executing. They answer questions like this in a competitive setting both as a team and individually. Speed matters, along with accuracy.

MathCounts is a national program that brings together students for in-person contests. In the state competition this past weekend, Steamboat Springs became the first Western Slope math team to earn recognition at the MathCounts competition where Front Range schools typically dominate.

These passionate minds practice two to three times a week before school. They workout with Coach Sally Lambert who has dedicated herself through countless volunteer hours to nurture these students to be state and national contenders in math, while fostering a love for their intellectual sport.

Assistant coach Cedar Turek, a high school student, deserves significant recognition for his last two years of service to the team. This team wasn't available to Turek when he was in middle school, but it's been suggested that he would have been a national contender.

I was privileged to have viewed a mock competition at a school board meeting, and I am in awe of their talent and passion. Please join me in recognizing these young minds.

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In the individual completion, Shane Lambert placed fourth, earning a spot on the Colorado State MathCounts team. Shane will be competing in Washington, D.C., at the National MathCounts contest in May. Indiana Kretzschmar placing 36th, Jade Henderson 42nd and Suzy Magill  96th. Gabe Gray, Grey Barbier, Bryson Lee and Jay Phillips also represented the Steamboat Springs Middle School as individuals.

In the team competition: Shane Lambert, Jade Henderson, Indiana Kretzschmar and Suzy Magill took sixth place earning recognition at state as well as a trophy for the middle school display case.

Congratulations to the entire Steamboat Springs Middle School MathCounts team. Shane we will be rooting for you at Nationals, and we hope to follow all of the team members future competitions. Go math!

BTW, if you didn't already find the solution to the original question: Since Taye runs a lap every six minutes and Will runs a lap every eight minutes, they will be back together again at the starting point for the first time at 24 minutes – the LCM of six and eight. In 24 minutes, Taye will have run 24 ÷ 6 = 4 laps.

Michelle Dover

Steamboat Springs School Board