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Boarding school math opportunities

MuscatwineMuscatwine 3 replies2 threads New Member
My kiddo is finishing multivariable calculas in ninth grade. Any boarding schools where math topics like differential equations, set theory, graph theory are taught?

Can anyone weigh in on how math is at schools like Hotchkiss, Choate or Lawrenceville?

I am stretching to find a school that might have math options...my kiddo just wants to keep the math going, but she is really interested in culture, developing other passions.

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Replies to: Boarding school math opportunities

  • cinnamon1212cinnamon1212 516 replies6 threads Member
    Wouldn't asking the school directly be best? (And most accurate). I suspect your daughter would not be the only similar advanced math student at any of those schools.
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  • dogsmama1997dogsmama1997 478 replies29 threads Member
    A conversation with the head of the math department is in order. I know of some schools that are more rigid than others about which class an incoming student needs to take even if they’ve taken that math before. So us telling you “Choate has such and such math” won’t do any good if they insist that every incoming student takes choate’s particular pre calc class. Just a random example but start emailing math department heads! If you need an introduction email the admissions department and explain your questions. They should be happy to hook you up with the appropriate faculty member.
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  • gardenstategalgardenstategal 5868 replies10 threads Senior Member
    Definitely agree with @dogsmama1997 . I know kids at George School like this for whom a tutorial of 1-3 students was created. But it's unlikely you'll find it in the course catalog. Check out Exeter, though.
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  • MuscatwineMuscatwine 3 replies2 threads New Member
    Thank you for your replies and advice! I will do just that rather than exert all this energy and time for a school that is inflexible. I absolutely expect that my kiddo is not unique. :-)

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  • mairlodimairlodi 54 replies4 threads Junior Member
    Have you read this thread from a couple of years ago?


    I think it gives some different perspectives to think about.

    Most BSs do not offer any math classes beyond multivariable calculus. Needing several years of math beyond multivariable calculus will narrow your search significantly.

    Independent study in math may be possible at schools but you have to think about whether your child will want math peers.
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  • Golfgr8Golfgr8 1123 replies20 threads Senior Member
    You can do some scouting on this topic via an online search of course catalogues. We know kids that are taking Linear Algebra and a type of Math Theory course that is a step beyond Multivariable Calc....also special projects in Math... you can actually go online to view course catalogues of the different boarding schools to check it out....you may also be interested in courses that provide applications and special projects in areas of higher math, engineering, and computing.
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  • Happytimes2001Happytimes2001 1490 replies12 threads Senior Member
    We have math kids. Schools vary a lot in terms of "advanced" math. Many state they have advanced math, but check the curriculum carefully. Make sure there is flexibility so your math kid can skip things if needed. Also, not all schools have teachers with advanced math degrees while others are outstanding. It's great if your kid can create their own path with guidance.

    You can likely speak to the math chair ( after acceptance). Math kids like yours are pretty rare in the US (but not in other nations which are often 2+ years ahead of US students).

    You also have to check to ensure your math kid can take science classes that mesh together. Sometimes a kid cannot take a particular science unless they have a particular math ( even if the skill is there). You should also check to see how far the schools math team has gone in national/international contests. And check out their science dept as well. Many schools are stronger in one dept. or another. Some also require that kids not only do well but also get particular scores in order to pursue particular classes.

    Lastly, ask your kid for input. One of my kids took an easier math path since they realized it was an unlikely path that they would take in college. Ending at level X in math was the plan. Why take independent study if there are so many other things to delve into. ( This was my kids thinking).
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  • CavsFan2003CavsFan2003 901 replies72 threads Member
    Choate has up to Honors Math Seminar courses taken the year after Multivar/Linalg. After that, students can either do a Directed Study or go to Yale/some other local university.
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  • Happytimes2001Happytimes2001 1490 replies12 threads Senior Member
    @CavsFan2003 That’s exactly the type of research parents and kids need. As a BS parent paying $$$$ I don’t want my kids taking college classes because they have completed the entire sequence. The BS imho should be able to meet all of the academic needs of my kid while he or she is there. That college class tree was an option when we were still considering public school, however.
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  • skieuropeskieurope 39604 replies7189 threads Super Moderator
    I don’t want my kids taking college classes because they have completed the entire sequence. The BS imho should be able to meet all of the academic needs of my kid while he or she is there. That college class tree was an option when we were still considering public school, however.

    The reality is, though, boarding school is not the best option for everyone. On the non-academic side, the future Olympian/pro athlete/Oscar winner is not going to have the time to devote to these activities given the BS demands. Similarly, the kid who is taking MVC in 9th grade is going to have very very limited options for schools with 3 years of advanced math. Yes, they will find it at Andover/Exeter and one or two more, but for many smaller schools, devoting resources to these outliers is contrary to their brand message.
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  • Happytimes2001Happytimes2001 1490 replies12 threads Senior Member
    @skieurope Yes, I guess that's true as we were looking mainly at schools that could meet the outlier needs in math. Frankly, I'm still surprised they exist as BS are not that large in terms of # of students.
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  • OnToTheNextOnToTheNext 17 replies4 threads Junior Member
    Definitely check the course catalogs of the schools you think may be of interest. But also reach out to the school. NMH has a block system that has 8 opportunities for math over the typical 4 years of HS. They offer Multivariable, Linear Algebra, and Number Theory as their 3 post-calc classes, and there are probably independent study options as well.
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