The Williams College Squash and Beyond Education program expanded in the summer of 2017 to include a mathematics component for middle school students. As with other Squash and Beyond education programs, our philosophy remains the same: helping students improve their squash game while also promoting their passion for math in a fun environment. Students will take an entrance exam upon arriving to camp to assess his or her level. All levels will be rigorous and academically challenging, but we will differentiate and pace accordingly. All students will focus on different levels of both algebra and geometry, the foundations of high school mathematics. Central to the curriculum with be the engaging opportunity to connect math with sports, money, and other real life applications. Specifically, students will explore the concepts of quadratic behavior, which is how the physics of sports can be described mathematically. The parabolas they study will mirror those of a long home run, a field goal in football, an arching three-point basket made in basketball or a lob in tennis or squash. They will also delve into the many geometric shapes found in everyday life, such as compound interest and the basics of probability. There will be games, projects and fun problems, to challenge students on all levels.
How does it work?
The program will run for five days, beginning on the Sunday afternoon. Campers will be provided ten hours of math instruction during the week. All math classes will take place from noon to 2 pm. Campers will not miss out on any squash related activities and will attend all evening activities. There will be no homework assignments during the week.
The program will be overseen by Robert Thistle, Mathematics Teacher at Mount Greylock Regional High School in Williamstown, MA. Robert has taught all levels of high school mathematics, from Algebra to AP Calculus and has taught ACT/SAT prep for Squash and Beyond for the last four summers. He is also the Mount Greylock Boys’ Varsity Basketball Coach.