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Feb 23, 2011

Regional Competition for Annual Math Olympiad ends today

The last two regional competitions of the annual Math Olympiad was held today at the San John’s Junior College gym. A total of thirteen high schools participated in the two rounds of competitions for the Belize District. The competition was fierce and the rivalry among the schools was all too present. At the end of the day, two private schools from the City held their own and emerged as district finalists who will go on to compete against the other districts in March. News Five’s Delahnie Bain was present as the students tested their wit.

Delahnie Bain, Reporting

The Social Security Board’s Math Olympiad is in its fifth year and while it’s one of the toughest subjects in schools, the game is picking up traction. After touring the districts, the final rounds of regional competition were held today at the Saint John’s College Gymnasium in Belize City.

Leticia Vega, Program Coordinator, Belize Math Olympiad

Leticia Vega

“We started in the west; we had participation of ten high schools. It was an excellent match. Of course, at the end of the day, there’s only one winner. In that case it was Belize Christian Academy; they won for that region and they also were the winners last year. Then in the southern region, we had the winning team being from the Julian Cho Technical High School and in the Northern region, which was the competition that took place last week, we had Corozal Community College winning that game.”

Yelina Gough

Due to the number of schools, the Central region was split into groups A and B. At the end of three matches, St. Catherine Academy beat out six other schools in Central A, with a margin of over four thousand points.

Yelina Gough, St. Catherine Academy Team

“It was very exciting, it was nerve racking but after we got the first questions it was very fun and we just got into it and we blocked out everybody. So it’s a good experience.”

Xux Ek’ Novelo, St. Catherine Academy Team

Xux Ek’ Novelo

“It’s very interesting because you see all these questions and all these words but it just comes down to one simple thing. So it was interesting; it was a really good experience.”

Suraye Solis

Suraye Solis, St. Catherine Academy Team

“After the questions start coming up you calm down because you know the stuff. So it gets easier.”

Annie Li, St. Catherine Academy Team

Annie Li

“We were in the led the entire while so that took off the nerve racking-ness and that made us feel as if though we were in an environment where we were able to be comfortable.”

Six school competed in Central B and again it was a sweeping victory; this time for the St. John’s College team, which scored a record breaking six thousand, two hundred and one points.

Einar Marin

Einar Marin

“At first we were kind of nervous but after a while we just started to take it as a practice match.”

Aaron Stock

Aaron Stock

“It’s been the product of four years of preparation for Romel and I. We’ve been practicing every single Tuesday since first form but now since it’s what we call Math Olympiad season we practice every single evening. And it’s been two years for our junior as well.”

Romel Rudon

Romel Rudon

“We do try our best; we drill ourselves every opportunity we can. Like if we get a study period; we do math and from now we’re just going to drill our juniors to prepare them for the nationals.”

Michael Teng

Michael Teng

“I like math during every subject, it’s the most subject that I like in the school. So I basically like math.”

By all accounts, preparation for the Math Olympiad is serious work, but the Program Coordinator, Leticia Vega says the game is aimed at making a difficult task enjoyable.

Leticia Vega

“I think the theme of the Belize Math Olympiad kinda summarizes the purpose. It says “I’m stimulating enthusiasm and critical thinking through mathematical creativity. So in the form of a game we want to break all those barriers of negative thinking in terms of the fear for math and I think breaking those behaviors and attitudes we can actually have improvement in the performance in math.”

All participating teams, coaches and school principals walked away with a prize for their efforts, but only St. Catherin Academy and St. John’s College move on to compete in the nationals where the wining team gets a laptop for each member and a projector for their school. Delahnie Bain for News Five.

The national competition will be held on March ninth at the UB gymnasium in Belmopan.

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3 Responses for “Regional Competition for Annual Math Olympiad ends today”

  1. leon leon says:

    This is great news. “A mind is a terrible thing to waste.” Belizeans, you can do it too! Put those minds to work and solve those Math problems. You are the future of your country.

  2. Sherlene says:

    Great work Leticia and the Math Olympiad Team! I’m looking forward for the compition to grow and better reach each high chool student in Belize.

  3. Earl Grey says:

    THIS IS A BRIGHT SPOT IN THE FUTURE OF BELIZE………….THANK GOD!!!

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