About the Math Circle

The VT Math Circle brings together mathematicians or graduate students from VT and middle school students from Blacksburg and its vicinity, in a journey to explore the beauty of mathematics, and promote mathematical creativity.

If you are interested in learning some new mathematics, enjoy the challenge of a good math problem, want to enhance your problem solving capabilities and refine your logical thinking skills, please join our meetings. In addition, we will host Math Kangaroo mathematical competition for the participants of the Blacksburg Math Circle. Please see the Activities page for more information on this competition and how to register.

Middle School Math Circle

Year Long Program

Are you intrigued by math puzzles? Would you like to discover what lies at the core of mathematics? Do you want to learn how to think mathematically? Then join our fun and engaging problem solving sessions.

Session format

We will begin with short fun warm-up questions (such as guessing the number of matchsticks needed to create a sequence of 100 consecutive adjacent squares of side one) and follow up with a deeper mathematical investigation (e.g. What numbers can be written as the sum of three consecutive integers?). Our sessions will be very hands- on, please expect to take an active role in your learning. Typically there won't be any lectures, but rather worksheets to guide you through a mathematical exploration. Depending on the activity, we may either break the students in groups (each working at a different "station" or set of problems), or conduct the investigation as a class (as one nice cohesive group). Some problems may be hard, but fun.

Who is it for?

The Blacksburg Math Circle welcomes every middle school student who is mathematically curious and wants to discover the power of mathematical thinking. The only prerequisites are a deep interest in math and being able to do basic algebraic manipulations, at about the level of Algebra 1.

How often do we meet?

The math circle sessions will be offered bimonthly, from September to May, on Saturday mornings (9:30-10:30 am). Please check the calendar for up-to-date meeting information. Although missing an occasional meeting is not critical to the success of the program, students are expected to attend regularly.

What to bring?

We expect that a student will bring (a) Notebook (as we sometime will use ideas from the previous session(s)) and (b) Pen/pencil.

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Frequently Asked Questions

How to apply?

Click the 'Join our Circle' tab and follow the instructions for student registration.

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Where is it located?

All the VT meetings are in the McBryde Hall (featured below) in room 455. For directions and an Interactive campus map, please click here.

We hope to see you soon!

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Math Kangaroo mathematical competition

The Blacksburg Math Circle for middle school will host the Math Kangaroo.

The Math Kangaroo is an international mathematical competition with more than 50 countries that take an active part in it. The competition is held annually on the third Thursday of March. The key competence tested by the Kangaroo is logical combination, not just pure knowledge of formulas. There are 30 questions on the test. A correct answer scores 1 point. There is no penalty for incorrect or blank answers. Because of the rising popularity of the Mathematical Kangaroo in many participating countries, it is currently the most participated scholar math competition.

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Getting involved

Want to help our expanding math circle grow? Please click the 'Join our Circle' tab and follow the instructions for Parent and Educator Involvement. Please contact us if you would like any additional materials. We truly appreciate the support!

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