100% Online, beginning as a joint initiative between American Mathematics Competitions (AMC) and AreteLabs and entering its 7th season, Math Madness is emerging as one of the premiere math competition events in the United States. In 2018, almost 600 schools and over 10,000 students from across the country competed in the online league, tournament and championship and the feedback continues to be overwhelmingly positive. Teachers and students love this experience.
Math Madness takes place in the fall with one event held for high school teams (9th-12th), one for middle school teams (6th-8th), and new for this fall, one for elementary school teams (3rd-5th). The structure of the event is as follows:
Sept 22 - Sept 28: Practice Round (primarily for new teams)
Sept 29 - Oct 5: Collaboration Round I (Fun rounds where kids work together in mini-teams)
Oct 6 - Oct 12: Collaboration Round II
Oct 13 - Oct 19: Qualifying Round I (Data from these rounds are used to assign ALL teams to a series of brackets)
Oct 20 - Oct 26: Qualifying Round II (Last week to sign up)
Oct 27 - Nov 2: Bracket Round I (Single Elimination)
Nov 3 - Nov 9: Bracket Round II (Teams that lost in Bracket Round I can begin playing in informal matches)
Nov 10 - Nov 16: Bracket Round III
Nov 17 - Nov 23: OFF for Thanksgiving
Nov 24 - Nov 30: Bracket Round IV
Dec 1 - Dec 7: Bracket Round V
Dec 8 - Dec 14: Championship Round
The system arranges all matches for all rounds. Each match involves 2 teams and each round lasts 1 week. All rounds begin Sunday and end Saturday. A team can compete at any time during a given round. It can change its time to play during the round and from round to round, as well as the players it fields. In addition, a team can opt out of any round that might conflict with its school schedule, keeping the commitment required to participate in the event to a minimum. In fact, the only 2 responsibilities of a teacher throughout the entire season are to add students to the team and choose the time to play each round, simple.
If a team chooses the same time to play as its opponent, the match is live with team score updating in real time. To add to the excitement, individuals from opposing teams are matched together evenly based on past performance, a second level of competition. If teams cannot find a common time to compete, then each team plays at a time convenient for it, with the winner decided after both teams have played. In this case, students square up against their personal best.
All matches are 30 minutes in length (20 minutes at the elementary level) and all students from the same team must play under the supervision of their teacher, simultaneously and individually. Thus, each student must have separate access to a computer/tablet and the internet. A team must field a minimum of 5 players per match (or risk being at a scoring disadvantage) but a maximum team size is not imposed. When the match starts, all team members logged into the AreteLabs website are automatically redirected to the Match Arena where a scoreboard is displayed as well as a question area. Each match includes 7-8 multiple choice and fill-in-the-blank questions. Content at the high school level is primarily aligned with AMC 10/12, at the middle school level with AMC 8, and at the elementary level with MOEMS, with a wide spread of difficulty to engage students of all abilities. Almost all content is also linked to the CCSS. A student receives 1 point for each question answered correctly. Team score is calculated by summing the top 5 individual scores of the given team. Students are not restricted to a specific time length for answering any given question. Once the match is over, questions and solutions are immediately furnished to each team to stimulate a unique teaching and learning opportunity.
As the season progresses, rankings of the top 50% of individuals and teams are published to highlight achievement and to help members of the greater community measure their own effort and progress. Teams are matched first by skill so that the competition is even and then by common time availability so that teams can play live where possible. Data from the 2 qualifying rounds are used to determine bracket assignments. The top 64 teams are assigned to the Title bracket. Remaining teams are then evenly placed in additional brackets based on team size, with all teams competing in a bracket. Within each bracket, teams are sorted by skill and seeded accordingly, following NCAA March Madness protocol.
The two collaboration rounds are meant to be informal. They are the only rounds where students do not play individually. Instead, teachers are asked to divide their team into mini-teams of no less than 2 students, assigning 1 student to log in and input answers on behalf of the mini-team. The members of each mini-team are free to discuss each question together.
Those teams that are eliminated from a bracket can nonetheless extend their season by opting in to play against other similarly situated teams in weekly matches automatically arranged by the system. In addition, a teacher can separately challenge another team to a match or divide his/her team into multiple teams that play against each other. Content from the present season and past seasons is made available to fuel such additional competition activity. Thus, all teams are guaranteed 10 rounds of play with the flexibility to opt out as needed.
To participate, a teacher must (1) activate a free account (click here), (2) create a team once inside the account by clicking the "+Team" button, and then (3) register that team on the Events page, selecting "High", "Middle" or "Elementary" first depending on your team's level. A teacher can add as many students to the team as desired throughout the season, with each student assigned a separate account. Unique student ID information is not required nor does AreteLabs utilize student or teacher data in any way. Moreover, students are free to conceal their identity. Note that upon request we will push Math Madness question sets from years prior to a newly activated account so that a teacher can both review content appropriateness as well as create a live match for students to better determine potential interest in the core experience. See contact information below if interested.
2019 Math Madness officially commences the week of September 29th and runs through the end of the fall. The week of Thanksgiving is an off-week. The period to register will remain open until October 25th. Teams that register late simply miss the intervening rounds. Once registered, please review Math Madness in more detail by clicking "Math Madness" in the dropdown at the top/right of the account and then selecting the About tab. Note that while an email with an invoice attached to it will automatically be emailed to you upon registration, you may also download a copy of your invoice on your Events page. Payment by check is politely requested although a credit card purchase can be arranged if there is no alternative. Schools are given two months to pay which can be extended if necessary. In the pricing area below, a player is defined as an individual student who competes at least once during the event. Prices listed (scroll down) are for the entire team to play for the entire season. Prices for the Elementary event are lower than those cited below: \($125\) for 5-10 player teams through \($195\) for unlimited players. Price accommodation is available upon request and as needed. Please do not hesitate to send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions or call 312-952-0436. We are happy to walk teachers through the process as we are committed to providing exemplary customer support, at sign-up and during the entire season.
Thank you and welcome to Math Madness! . . .