Jason Mao landed a perfect 25 out of 25 on the Mathematical Association of America’s American Math Competition (MAA AMC) AMC 8 middle school test. Achieving 100% on the mathematical challenge placed Mao in the top 1% nationally. As a result, Mao, a seventh grade student at Robert R. Lazar Middle School in Montville Township, New Jersey, earned the AMC 8 “Honor Roll of Distinction.”
According to the MAA website, the AMC 8 competition is a 25-question, 40-minute, multiple choice mathematics examination administered nationally to middle school students in a “low-stress and friendly environment.” The competition is designed to “promote the development of problem-solving skills,” and to provide middle school students with “an opportunity to develop positive attitudes towards analytical thinking and mathematics that can assist in future careers.”
“Students apply classroom skills to unique problem-solving challenges.” The test reflects typical middle school mathematics curriculum topics such as: “counting and probability, estimation, proportional reasoning, elementary geometry including the Pythagorean Theorem, spatial visualization, everyday applications, and reading and interpreting graphs and tables. In addition some of the later questions may involve linear or quadratic functions and equations, coordinate geometry, and other topics traditionally covered in a beginning algebra course.”
Over 300,000 students in middle school, high school and college participate annually in MCC AMC competitions. More than 6,000 schools are represented in the competitions.
“Students were chosen for the Lazar team based on their advanced math class,” said 8th Grade Mathematics teacher Ellen Parmentier.
The Lazar team consisted of ten students: Jason Mao (grade 7), Prisha Malik (7), Iremgul Karakaya (7), Jack Andreuccetti (7), Joshua Estrin (7), Nicholas Ferrone (7), Ryan Sun (8), Krish Jana (7), Kevin Chen (8), and Scipio Han (7).
The test was administered in November of 2019. Results were presented January 13, 2020. The entire team received recognition for their participation in the national competition.
“The top three students received a School Certificate of Merit,” Parmentier added, “for a team score above 50; since their team score (sum of top 3 students) was 61.”
Mao, Estrin & Sun were Lazar's top 3 scorers. Mao achieved first place and Estrin & Sun tied for second place.