This course is designed to expose talented young math students to the beauty and power of mathematics as a problem-solving instrument. Throughout the week, students will explore a wide range of ideas from many different branches of mathematics, including taxicab geometry, graph theory, combinatorics, probability, and social choice theory. Students will actively work in small teams to use the new mathematics they learn to solve problems that face citizens and professionals from a variety of sectors of our society. A strong emphasis will be placed on using mathematics to model real-world situations. Each day, students will be presented with a big problem to solve. After discussing students’ initial thoughts and solutions, they will be introduced to fundamental concepts in a new branch of mathematics (one per day) and shown how those ideas can be used to solve the big problem.
Requirements: It is highly recommended that students will have successfully completed either NC Math 1 or Algebra 1 before beginning this course. However, students with very strong mathematical abilities who have only studied pre-algebra topics may also be prepared for the course.