When the National Math Festival opens Saturday morning in downtown Washington, D.C., a six-member team of Mansfield Middle School students will be ready to compete in The Flagway Game.
More than 20,000 people are expected to participate in the festival, which will offer a day of free varied public math activities at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center.
The Flagway Game is a patented math exercise created by Bob Moses, originator of The Algebra Project. It is designed to develop reasoning skills and critical thinking. Each team lines up on one end of the playing area. One player at a time must run to the opposite end of the area to pick up a card (flag) with the numbers on it. They must run back to their team, consult the other members, then navigate their way through the tree graph (starting at the center) to place the flag in the appropriate area. Once all the numbers on the flags are sorted, the points are tallied and the team with the most points wins the game.
Students are not told how to categorize the numbers. They have to make their own conjectures based on their knowledge of numbers in order to crack the code themselves.
“Flagway gives students a new way to think about math. They see numbers in a different way,” said Senior High math teacher Kelly Scott Parker. “The team has worked hard on this. They’re excited about going.”
Parker and math teacher John Grant will accompany the group to Washington.
Members of the middle school team are Josh Brooks, Christian Greene, Olyvia Marshall, Keyvon Smith, Ellie Snyder and Tayvon Vickers. All have participated in the after-school Flagway club, one of several academic clubs funded by the district’s 21st Century state grant.
Also making the trip will be six Mansfield Senior High students who have served as mentors to the younger group. They are Alisha Franklin, Aveon Grose, Zephaniah Jackson, Malachi Mays, Jarmel Shaw and Erynn Vaughn. The mentors group participated in The Flagway Game conference in October on the Ohio State University-Mansfield campus.
The Mansfield City Schools delegation will leave around 8 AM on Friday and return Sunday evening. A visit to the National Museum of African-American History and Culture is planned for Sunday morning. Participation in the National Math Festival is funded by a grant from the Richland County Foundation to Mansfield City Schools and Ohio State University-Mansfield.
Source, Photo: Mansfield City Schools