Math Team Popular, Competitive This Year


Mattea Vecera, Staff Writer, Advanced Journalism

Math Team is the most popular that it’s been in years. Composed of students from all different grade levels, the meets bring them together to sharpen their thinking skills while competing to do their best.

“During these math meets, students take four tests that last 15 minutes individually before coming together and collaborating on one test as a group of eight,” explained Mr. Bryan Konshak, math teacher and adviser for the Math Team.

Each test consists of problems that get more advanced as you proceed, but are more or less difficult to solve depending on each individual’s skill set. The questions primarily come from algebra, advanced algebra, and geometry with more challenging topics scattered throughout.

“I find it to be really cool how you can take kids out of their normal setting of school where sometimes you don’t get the response that you want. When you’re in the room, you see 24 different kids working on math problems. When the test is done, they all turn to each other and are talking math. They get excited and they are genuinely enthusiastic about doing it and getting the right answer. It’s not something you see in the classroom every day,” said Konshak.

Notre Dame’s large 2018-19 team consists of about 16 active members, but there are many others who come and go to certain meets. This year, there are five meets spread throughout the school year.

Junior Noah Sternig, who placed 3rd in the first math meet of the year, plans on competing again soon.

“I never considered myself to be someone who enjoyed math, but I decided to give the Math Team a try this year. I ended up really enjoying the competition, as well as the atmosphere with all the different schools involved,” he said.

This year, there are 11 other area schools who compete, including East DePere and Bay Port. Since Notre Dame has a larger team this year, there are two groups that compete in the collaborative portion of the test.

“The tests were a lot easier than I expected, and I really enjoyed the final team test where I worked with other Notre Dame students,” said Sternig.

Some regular members of this team include Audrey Sladek, Zach Kellner, Alana Borman, Joseph Massabni and JunHyeok Cha. At the most recent meet on January 14th, Cha placed 4th in his age group.

The Math Team encourages new members at any time throughout the school year, and you can see Mr. Konshak’s in Room 220 to sign up.

“Math is fun,” remarked Konshak, “and anyone is welcome to join!”