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Topic: The End of the 2001-02 PoW Year
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Annie Fetter

Posts: 2,090
Registered: 12/3/04
The End of the 2001-02 PoW Year
Posted: May 29, 2002 5:34 PM
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The end of the PoW year is almost here! The puzzles that are now
active will be our last new problems until September. Here's a look
at what's available right now:

Problems accepting submissions through Monday, June 3:

Middle School: Milk Madness
Geometry: Finding the Side of a Parallelogram
Discrete Math: Tally That Tune

Problems accepting submissions through Monday, June 10:

Elementary: Jumping Rope
Middle School: Ducky Promenade
Algebra: Ant Race
Calculus: Bacterial Growth Rates

Jumping Rope and Ducky Promenade are being mentored by students from
Western Oregon University.

The new PoWs will return in September, though we might have a problem
or two available near the end of August to test out some new software
features. One of those features will be a change in how we "grade"
the submissions. While we're currently using a system of credit/no
credit, we'll be switching to a scoring rubric in the fall. This is
in line with many of the state testing programs and we feel it will
give us an opportunity to communicate a lot of information to students
about their work and how they might improve it even if we can't
individually mentor every submission. It will also allow us to enlist
the help of more pre-service and inservice teachers who would like
some practice using a rubric.

Thanks for your interest throughout this year. Since posting our
first PoW in December of 1993, one of our goals has been to engage
students in interesting and thoughtful mathematics and mathematical
writing and communication. This spring, to help us write hints and
answer checks for the new "self-guided" problems, we started a weekly
meeting in the Math Forum office that we call Math Monday. It's
turned into an opportunity for interested Math Forum employees to try
out many of the possible future Problems of the Week, both self-guided
and "regular", and then talk about them - any misunderstandings in the
wording of the problems, the proposed hints and answer checks for the
self-guided problems, the possible solution paths, and whether the
problems and their solutions are interesting! It's a great chance for
us to actually talk about problems as a group - math is part of what
brought us all together, yet we often get lost in our day to day tasks
and don't have the opportunity to simply "do" math. I think it's been
a lot of fun for everyone, and we'll keep meeting throughout the
summer as we begin to write new problems for next year.

We'll send out a message announcing when new problems are available.
You can also check the PoW status page,

Have a great summer (those of you in the northern hemisphere, anyway)!


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