Eight Peruvian Park fifth-grade students were recently honored with a national honor roll medal for being in the top 10 percent of all participants in a national math test taken last fall. In addition, one fifth-grade class won the team achievement plaque for being in the top 10 percent of all classes.
“I’m extremely happy that they did so well,” Principal Leslie Jewkes said. “Those students are quite accelerated in mathematics.”
Two Peruvian Park classes, or about 40 students, participated in the Noetic-Learning math test, in which more than 25,000 second- through sixth-grade students from 556 schools participated. The fifth-graders had 45 minutes to complete 20 questions.
“I thought they were more challenging questions, where they were given factors to solve story problems and had to use their critical-thinking skills,” said fifth-grade teacher Debbie Alexander, whose class was awarded the team achievement plaque.
Fifth-grade teacher Halley Kirk, who found the test, said they were looking for a challenge for these students who, as a whole, are gifted in mathematics.
“We were pleased with the results since many of these test questions required a higher level thinking and geometrical reasoning, as well as application of the skills they had learned,” she said. “We’re always looking for ways to challenge students, and this allowed them to apply their math knowledge.”
Peruvian Park teachers will evaluate the math test to see if they want to offer it to other grade levels next fall, but Kirk said that she felt the pilot on the fifth-grade was worthwhile.
Fifth-grader Ryan Bartholomew, who was one of the top eight Peruvian Park scorers, said he found the questions either “simple or hard.”
“I could do all the division questions, and the story questions gave enough facts that we could figure them out, but there were a couple with riddles that I skipped over and had planned to go back to,” he said.
Ryan, who ran out of time to go back to complete the skipped questions, said he got all 18 of the questions he answered correct.
“I’m really good at math. It’s my favorite core subject. But when our teacher was calling out names to receive the medals, there was one left, and I wasn’t sure it was going to be me. Then she said my name and it was like ‘Whoa!’ I was way surprised,” he said.
Other Peruvian Park national honor roll medal students are Eric Chen, Hannah Demke, Will Faerber, Samuel Jackson, Zoe Liu, Kevin Suhaka and Selena Yu.