All about math department projects and events.

Calculus Projects!

This just in from Mrs. McCullagh:

Calculus students displayed their work on a challenging optimization problem. They were asked to plan a design to hang “something” from “somewhere”, and then determine the least amount of rope or wire needed.
Some of the things they chose to hang included a Williston medallion from the Golden Gate Bridge, a disco ball from Eiffel Tower, a circus hoop from the circus tent, a tire swing from a tree, and a target in a hockey goal. They needed to plan how far apart the hangers would be and how far down their item would hang. They then used Calculus to find the minimum amount of rope or wire needed for the project. Their presentations needed to include all of their calculations and drawing to support their work and solutions. They also needed to build a model to represent their solution.

Data Science Project in Topics

This just in from Ms. Baldwin’s Topics class!

“This group did a beautiful Adobe Spark for their T2 final data science project in Topics. They were asked to analyze data collected in the 1840’s that shows the importance of handwashing as a medical practice. They used two r packages: #dplyr and #ggplot2. The project comes from #DataCamp, #JupyterNotebook, #DataScience, #R.”

You can check out their project right here!

Lots of snow = lots of math!

This just in from Dr. Raj!

When Easthampton was shutting down, Tuesday night, with snow and Winter Advisory notices – I had this wonderful group of students at the Math Resource Center, working with each other. Senior through Freshman level students, scaffolding in action.

I wound up with 11 students that night, more busy than average, significantly, no one was studying for assessments, just review and clarifications.

US Mathematics Students of the Trimester – Fall 2017

I am excited to announce the Upper School Mathematics Students of the Trimester – Fall 2017!

Each math faculty member was free to choose whichever student of theirs they thought best exemplified what they are looking for in a model mathematics student. The official description of the award is as follows:

“Awarded to students who exemplify the math department’s core values of competence, confidence, and perseverance while helping their peers realize the relevance and importance of an exceptional mathematical education both for its beauty and for its practical application.”

The following students have been recognized as the Upper School Mathematics Students of the Trimester for Fall 2017.

Please join me in congratulating these outstanding mathematics students!

Eric Albanese – Eric always comes into Precalculus Honors with a huge smile on his face, with his homework complete, and ready to participate in the discussion. He picks up material easily, but he always supplements that understanding with diligent effort and great preparation. He is such a pleasure to teach, and I so look forward to seeing him each day.
Graham Allardyce – Graham was a dedicated and thoughtful student in Precalculus. He was actively engaged daily at the highest level. His contributions to class supported his and his classmates achievements.
Rachel Goodman – Rachel is always prepared for class and consistently pushes her understanding of the material to the next level. Rachel is quick to help those around her and brings great questions to class.
Kohmei Kadoya – He is a hardworking student who uses the veracross to get ahead, inverts the classroom by asking interesting clarifying questions before helping the peers with their difficulties. Purely for mastery of subject matter based on individual efforts.
Molly Kinstle – Molly has not only mastered the geometry content but she is constantly asking the deeper questions that connects concept together. She is willing to speak in class and help her classmates. She has also inquired about how she can take more maths than her current projection because she wants to excel in the area. She is organized and explains her work with full explanations and notation.
Devon Morgan – Devon brings constant positive energy and enthusiasm into the math classroom. She is always ready to discuss problems, share her work, or help others. She even took it on herself to make a Kahoot for assessment review. Devon is truly thriving in the discussion based geometry classroom.
Jack Phelan – Jack is impressively consistent and thorough in all that he does in TPS. He demonstrates the kind of intellectual curiosity and persistence that leads to high achievement in the field of mathematics. Jack frequently participates in class offering thoughtful insights to our discussions and activities. In his collaboration with classmates, he is collegial and disciplined. Great work, Jack!
Chris Ramirez – Chris has completely leaned into all aspects of class. Even though he has a gift for mathematics, he fully focuses on each topic until he reaches a level of deep understanding. I have also been thrilled to see how well he works with others. He is patient and kind when working with his peers, and clear with both his written and spoken explanations. He hasn’t let up the quality of his presence in class and I’m confident he’d be a fantastic tutor in the Math Resource Center!
Amanda Shen – Amanda has been a consistently hard working AP Calculus student. She always comes to class ready to work. Amanda is genuinely interested in fully understanding the concepts of a problem and not just in finding the answer. She has solid insights into the material and is able to apply her thoughts into understanding new and more complicated material.
Sonia Whitman – Sonia has had a wonderful first trimester in geometry. Her written work is precise, accurate and thorough. Despite outstanding results on all evaluations, I am most impressed with Sonia’s excellent class participation. Always kind and supportive, Sonia has helped her classmates understand with her willingness to volunteer to the most challenging questions. Her deductive reasoning skills are sharp and she is a star when asked to recognize a pattern. Well done, Sonia, and congratulations.
Harrison Winrow – Harrison had an outstanding and notable trimester in my class. He was an exemplary student for the the first part of the trimester; engaging, asking questions, and taking risks with the material. When he broke his leg and had to miss some time because of his surgery I was concerned that he might fall behind and not be able to keep the momentum that he had. Instead, he did not miss a beat! He continued to be a leader in the class!

Past students of the trimester can be found right here: Fall 2013, Winter 2014, Spring 2014, Fall 2014, Winter 2015, Spring 2015, Fall 2015, Winter 2016, Spring 2016, Fall 2016, Winter 2017, Spring 2017

The Math Resource Center Is Open!

The MRC is now fully operational in its new location, on the second floor of the library right next to the Writing Center! A student tutor is available during most class periods and a math department faculty member is present on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Sunday evenings during study hall.

Drop on by any time!

You can learn more about the MRC right here.

Here’s the full schedule:

Click to view a larger version


3 new teachers!

Three new teachers have joined the Williston Math Department! They all may be new to Williston, but they are not new to teaching.

Fun facts: The Williston Math department has a combined 245 years of teaching experience. Each teach in the department has been teaching for an average of 18.8 years!

Karla Schaffer – Karla taught math and worked at the Webb School in Tennessee for the last six years. Karla earned a B.A. in Mathematics and Psychology at Mercyhurst University and earned an MEd. in Teaching and Learning from Vanderbilt University. She will coach in the girl’s soccer and tennis programs. Karla and her husband Teddy will live in Clare House.

Teddy Schaffer – Teddy is an experienced math teacher who joins Williston from the Webb School in Tennessee. Teddy earned a B.S. in Mathematics and Economics from Furman University and a M.S. in Industrial and Systems Engineering from Georgia Tech. Teddy will teach math, and coach ultimate frisbee and water polo. Teddy and his wife Karla will live in Clare House.

Dr. Rajendra Shrivastava – Raj comes across the country from California to join the Williston community. He has taught math, physics, and computer science at both the high school and college level. Most recently, he has been teaching math and computer science in high schools. He holds several advanced degrees including a Ph.D in Computer Science from Louisiana State University. In addition to teaching math and computer science at Williston, Raj will lead the Robotics program and coach in the spring season. Raj will live on Main St. in Easthampton.



Dr. Shrivastava presents in Orlando!

A couple weeks ago, one of Williston’s newest teachers, Dr. Shrivastava, traveled to Orlando to present at the International Symposium on Sensor Networks, Systems and Security!

During his presentation Dr. Shrivastava inaugurated the conference, introduced Dr. Iyengar, reminisced about what it was like to his student in the 80s,  and talked about the theme for the event: “Generations and Continuity.”

All about math department projects and events.