Home News Local News Math challenge no problem for 3 Del Norte students

Math challenge no problem for 3 Del Norte students

Del Norte Elementary School fourth-graders Jett Lambert, left, Sean Lovato, center, and Amber Montgomery show certificates their teacher, Andrea Jordan, gave them for completing a total of 9,000 math problems as part of a month-long challenge to her class during virtual learning. (Juno Ogle Photo)

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Del Norte Elementary School teacher Andrea Jordan likes to keep her students challenged, but even she was surprised at the results of a recent challenge she issued to her fourth-grade students.

While Del Norte was still in all-remote classes, Jordan found an online program for teachers that had thousands of math problems. She decided to offer her students a cash prize to whoever could do the most problems in a month. She expected her students would complete several hundred of the problems.

“I had no idea what these kids would do,” she said.

Three of her students — Amber Montgomery, Sean Lovato and Jett Lambert — blew away any expectations she had by finishing more than 9,000 problems combined.

“We would check a couple times a week and see who was ahead and who was trying to beat whom. In the end, I just couldn’t believe my eyes,” Jordan said.

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When it was over, Amber had done more than 4,000 problems, Sean nearly 3,000 and Jett almost 2,000, Jordan said.

“They could do anything from any area of math. It was geometry, area, perimeter, multiplying, dividing. There was every kind of math problem they could pick and choose from,” she said.

On Wednesday, Jordan met with the students and their parents outside their school to present them with certificates and their awards.

All three of the students said they enjoyed doing math and were excited when she issued the challenge.

“I know what Sean was thinking about — money,” Jordan teased.

“I don’t care about the money, I care about the problems!” Sean replied.

Amber said learning more about math was what made her excited about the challenge. She spent an hour each night doing problems, and would even work on them on Saturdays and Sundays, she said.

“Almost every day you learn more and more about math,” she said. She’s learning division and said that and multiplication were her favorite types of problems to work on.

“Adding and subtracting was a little bit too easy,” she said.

Sean said he also liked division and multiplication, and Jett said multiplication was his favorite.

Sean and Amber said they didn’t keep track of their progress through the month.

‘I don’t keep track, I just go, go, go,” Sean said. 

“My mom, she made me keep track. She made me do a bunch,” Jett said.

Now that schools are in hybrid learning with in-person classes, Jordan has a new challenge for her students. They will be writing letters to Principal Kyle Alsup to persuade him to allow them to fly kites that they will build themselves.

City/RISD reporter Juno Ogle can be reached at 575-622-7710, ext. 205, or reporter04@rdrnews.com.

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