COVID 19 ALERT: We have made the decision to prioritize inclusion over supervisory "perfection" this year in response to COVID 19's continued impact on K-12 education. As such, schools that are operating virtually can participate in this event, with students playing from home where no other safe, reasonable option exists. More specifically, supervisory restrictions will be relaxed for the entirety of the four opening rounds. During the more formal bracket rounds that follow, restrictions will return toward normal but will be adapted where possible to the pandemic conditions being faced at that time.
MATH MADNESS DETAILS
100% Online, beginning as a joint initiative between American Mathematics Competitions (AMC) and AreteLabs and entering its 8th season, Math Madness is emerging as the premiere online math competition event in the United States. In 2019, over 700 schools and nearly 15,000 students from across the country competed in the online league, tournament and championship.
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 one for elementary school teams (3rd-5th). A team may consist of students from multiple grade levels within the defined grade span. This event has been designed to accommodate the various fall schedules of schools throughout the country. The structure of the event is as follows:
Sep 27 - Oct 3: Practice Round (OPTIONAL)
Oct 4 - Oct 10: Collaboration Round I (Fun round where kids work together in mini-teams)
Oct 11 - Oct 17: Collaboration Round II
Oct 18 - Oct 24: Qualifying Round I (Students play individually but as a team)
Oct 25 - Oct 31: Qualifying Round II (Last week to register)
Nov 1 - Nov 7: Bracket Round I (Single Elimination - all teams are assigned to one of a series of brackets)
Nov 8 - Nov 14: Bracket Round II
Nov 15 - Nov 21: Bracket Round III (Teams that lost in Bracket Round I can resume playing in informal, "Opt-in" matches)
Nov 22 - Nov 28: OFF for Thanksgiving
Nov 29 - Dec 5: Bracket Round IV
Dec 6 - Dec 12: Bracket Round V
Dec 13 - Dec 19: Championship Round (This round's matches may be played the previous week if Holiday breaks require)
The system arranges all matches for all rounds. Each match involves 2 teams and each round lasts 1 week. All matches are 30 minutes in length. 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. It may also opt of rounds in which it cannot play. Indeed, maximum scheduling flexibility and minimal teacher time/energy commitment are the hallmarks of this event. 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.
If a team chooses the same time to play as its opponent, the match is live with both team scores updating in real time on the student's scoreboard. If teams cannot find a common time to compete, then each team plays at a time convenient for it, with final results posting after both teams have played. The student's individual score also updates in real time as questions are answered correctly. This patented, live scoring framework thrills students and distinguishes this event from all other competition activities currently available.
Each match includes 7-8 multiple choice and fill-in-the-blank questions. Team score is calculated by summing the top 5 individual scores. 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 the 3rd, 4th, and 5th grade Common Core State Standards (CCSS). 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.
During the opening four rounds, teams are matched first by skill level 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.
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.
NEW FOR 2020: While Math Madness content is intended to span a wide spread of difficulty, the average difficulty level can nonetheless be in tension with the event's goal of including students of all ability. As such, if a high school team finds the content too difficult in the HS event, it can be reassigned to the MS event. So too can a middle school team be reassigned to the ES event. Such teams, however, cannot compete in the formal bracket tournament, only in the informal, opt-in matches of that phase.
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" depending on the team's level. A teacher may register multiple teams for Math Madness from the same account. However, the same team cannot compete in two separate levels of Math Madness. Upon request, Math Madness content from years prior can be placed in a newly activated account so that a teacher can both review content appropriateness as well as create a match for students to better determine potential interest in the experience.
Register by September 25th to be included in a practice round, by October 2nd to be included in the opening round. The period to register will remain open until October 30. All registered teams are guaranteed at least 5 rounds of competition. Teams that register late simply miss the intervening rounds. Once registered, teachers should review Math Madness in more detail by clicking "Math Madness" in the dropdown at the top/right of their account and then selecting the About tab on that page (https://www.aretelabs.com/math_madness/34). Payment by check is politely requested although a credit card purchase can be arranged if there is no alternative. In the pricing area below, a player is defined as an individual student who competes at least once during the event. Prices listed are for the entire team to play for the entire season. 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.
Thank you and welcome to Math Madness! . . .