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Q&A #403 |
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Hi Lee, If your son has shown interest in trigonometry and number theory I am going to assume that he has already studied elementary algebra. If not, make sure that he takes a teacher directed course in algebra. Have you discussed this interest with the math department of your son's school? Ask them if there are opportunities for students to participate in contests such as the state Mathematics leagues (such as the Indiana Math League or the Michigan Math League). These are the same contest that comes out six times a year, six questions each. There are always some number theory questions. Answer keys are provided for the contests. Interested students study previous contests in order to learn. Many schools have groups that study independently to take contests such s the ARML or the AHSME. The AHSME (American High School Mathematics Examination) is a tough test. Again it is the answer keys that provide information for learning. Write to: Dr. Walter E. Mientka, Executive Director eMail: walter@amc.unl.edu American Mathematics Competitions 1740 Vine Street FAX: 402-472-6087 University of Nebraska Tel: 800-527-3690 Lincoln, NE 68588-0658 U.S.A. Tel: 402-472-5114 (off hours) http://www.unl.edu/amc/ For books on elementary number theory I suggest that you go to a local bookstore such as Barnes and Nobles and look through books written by Martin Gardner or Rudy Rucker. Ask for listings of Dover Publications. Let your son chose the book. Another place to learn is to go to the Ask Dr. Math website: http://mathforum.org/dr.math/ Children are often interested in learning things that their parents show interest in. In your school math department ask for old textbooks. Go through the book together learning what ever interests your son. Nothing of what I have told you is very original. I hope that you are able to latch onto something that interests you both. -Marielouise, for the Teacher2Teacher service
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