Cornell Hosts Elementary and Middle School Girls for Math Competition

Cornell University recently hosted nearly 150 girls in grades 3-8 for the Girls' Adventures in Math (GAIM).

The team-based competition was held in 10 other locations in addition to the Cornell campus and asked participants to use "creative, strategic, out-of-the-box problem-solving" to solve challenging math puzzles. Upon completion of the competition, the Cornell contingent played strategy games and worked on puzzles and arts and crafts.

Many of the participants were members of the Ithaca Girls' Math Circle, a Cornell Math Department outreach program offering a range of math education opportunities for local K-12 students.

"Because I take all comers in math clubs, I have a mix of students: some who believe they are innately talented at math and some who think they aren't 'good at it' but wish they were. I think GAIM demonstrated to these girls that with exposure to problem-solving, with attention and interest, you can actually become good at it," said Laura Jones, senior research associate and Math Circle leader.

Jones also coached two of the winning teams and encouraged others to organize teams to coach.

The GAIM 2018 Cornell University winners in the elementary and middle school categories include teams from:

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About the Author

Joshua Bolkan is contributing editor for Campus Technology, THE Journal and STEAM Universe. He can be reached at