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Geometry camp offers head start for students
geometry pic1
Students from Stanislaus and Merced counties learn about geometry through a folding paper exercise at a free geometry camp offered by the CSU Stanislaus Math Department. - photo by NANCY ANGEL / The Journal

Most students shut their textbooks and retire their math skills at the end of the school year. But 32 dedicated students took advantage of the summer break to boost their geometry skills.

Eighth through 12th grade students from Stanislaus and Merced counties are participating in a program offered by the California State University, Stanislaus Math Department.  The goal of this program is to provide concentrated geometry instruction.

“The goal is to introduce students to geometry and prepare them before they start learning the subject in their school,” said CSU Stanislaus math professor Viji Sundar. “We are laying the foundation and tools for them to succeed in high school geometry.”

Attendance is free and voluntary, but Sundar said that the students appreciate the geometry camp.

“The students are actively engaged throughout the entire week of the camp,” said Sundar. “We teach them basic geometry concepts with hands-on approach using protractors and other tools, geometry boards, and paper folding for drawing out angles.”

Students were clearly excited to learn geometry during Tuesday’s camp. When Walnut Grove seventh grade student Lolyn Tejeda stepped foot for the first time at geometry camp, however, he was not sure he'd like the experience.

“I was nervous the first day,” said Tejeda. “Math is not my strong suit and I didn’t know anything about geometry. It’s been two days and I’ve already learned about shapes, angles and how to use a protractor.”

The camp is run by two aspiring teachers and two educators from Stanislaus County.

“This program helps students in the long run,” said Sundar. “This approach is beneficial and pays off because students ask questions and get the depth of the problem rather than memorizing concepts. Geometry camp is an excellent foundation and preparation.”