7th & 8th Graders Live on UNR's Campus for Math Camp - KTVN Channel 2 - Reno Tahoe Sparks News, Weather, Video

7th & 8th Graders Live on UNR's Campus for Math Camp

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The University of Nevada, Reno is host to 36 young girls...7th and 8th graders who are living on campus and solving some tough problems in class. Yes, while many girls are playing video games and taking trips, 12-year old Daisy Fanter is spending her summer…solving a puzzler. Turning from a multi-color list of 3-letter variations, she told us, "Here we have 3 colors, and we have to put them in a permutation." And she wouldn't have it any other way, as she put it, "Because it keeps me guessing and I can keep going at it."

So, she was happy to attend this special camp, where kids actually live in a dorm and learn at the university…a week of intensive instruction to start them on becoming “masters of math”. In charge is Dr. Lynda Wiest. She had the idea for this 16 years ago. For her, seeing the light bulbs going over these young heads is exciting. She wanted to give young girls...some self-worth, "To show that it’s OK to like math and be good at it. We’re here to help support them in that enthusiasm. There are other girls who are pursuing it, I hope other girls get on board."

Like 13-year old Breana Vasquez. Using an Ipad like the rest of her class, we found her responding to a math problem. Her solutions and her classmates’ came up alongside the question on the wall. The reason they did it this way? She told us, "It kind of helps us to listen to other peoples' ideas as well as ours."

In another room, there was another lesson. Dr. Wiest told us, "This particular group is learning data analysis and probability." That may seem a tough subject for a 12-year old, but Daisy Fanter can't wait to solve it: "You're like, 'hey, I figured it out!' and you're all happy."

When they finish, these 7th and 8th grade students get a certificate…but they receive much more than that. As Breana put it, "I find it very fascinating the things that you can do."

Breana's certificate is waiting for her when the week is over. Goodness knows a lot of kids could use the help. The scores students are getting in Washoe County show they could use some real intervention and refresher courses during their down time in the summer. Others, just really like math. No one there seems to love it more than 15-year old Brooke Covington. A former math camp student, she now comes back to volunteer. She enjoys, "Just solving things and understanding, like walking down the street and understanding that everything isn't made, that it doesn't just appear…that you have numbers to make everything."

The Northern Nevada Girls Math and Technology Camp is put on by the University of Nevada, Reno College of Education. You can learn more about it, and even fill out an application through this link:



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