San Marcos High School ~ Santa Barbara, CA

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San Marcos Math Team Triumphs

Ellen Butler
San Marcos Math Club’s Math Team wins the mathlete competition.

At San Marcos, we often hear about our water polo wins or our volleyball triumphs, but how often do we hear about our academic achievements? On the weekend of February, 10 2024, Westmont College held their 35th annual Mathematics Field Day. 

Students from nine local high schools attended, including Dos Pueblos, San Marcos, and Santa Barbara. San Marcos had both a 9/10 grade team and an 11/12 grade team competing. The 9/10 grade team consisted of freshman Henry Duran and sophomores Ellen Butler, Sean Nguyen, and Mya Shenoda. The 11/12 grade team consisted of juniors Spencer Bauer, Anna Butler, Kian Strenn, as well as team member Cooper Salts.

This competition consists of three separate events: College Bowls, Written Exams, and Team Chalk Talks. This year the topic for the Chalk Talk was “figurate numbers, each are numbers that can be represented by a regular geometrical arrangement of equally spaced points,” according to a Wesmont College press release. 

The team of four competed in a College Bowl, which is when they go head to head against another school. They must try and beat the other school to the answer. If they successfully do that, they get dibs on the next question. Every round of the College Bowl has four questions. The 11/12 grade team won the College Bowl, beating Dos Pueblos in the finals.

The other team portion of this competition is a written exam where the team of four works on five questions together. San Marcos earned the best score for the written exam as well.

The last portion of the competition is the Chalk Talk. Only one member from each team participates in the Chalk Talk. For San Marcos, Anna Butler gave a 12-minute presentation about Figurate Numbers. Anna Butler won first place for her chalk talk. For the first round she only had to present to her team and two judges, but for the final competition she gave her presentation to about 200 people.

“It was really exciting and it was extra fun that we worked as a team to accomplish our goal,” said Anna Butler.

San Marcos was massively successful at this event, taking home all the highest awards from this competition. If you are interested in participating in competitions like this you can join math club; you can do this by reaching out to Mr. Ashton at [email protected].

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Aurora Ivanova
Aurora Ivanova, Opinion Editor
Aurora is in 10th grade at San Marcos High School. This is her second year in journalism. She is interested in math and literature. Outside of school, she likes playing softball, reading, hanging out with her friends, and listening to music. She is excited to be working for the Kings Page.
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