// Advice Letter//
1/9/12 Dear N00bie, I hear you’re going to your first math competition, Maybe I can give you some advice.
First off, you shouldn’t overreact when you get a question wrong. It shouldn’t be too bad if you only get a few questions wrong, if you get a bunch wrong, then you can overreact. My team overreacted a lot when we got a question incorrect so we came in 4th place.Looking back on it, I really don’t think we should’ve overreacted, when you think about it, getting fourth place really isn’t that bad when it’s out of about 12 schools.At my first math competition, every time we got a question wrong my team would groan loudly and put their heads in their hands and blame each other so you should always have good sportsmanship, don’t blame your peers because if you do, you will never win.
Second, during your first competition,don’t except to win easily. The other teams could pose a challenge. During my most recent competition, my team expected to win easily because they thought the only real competition was B.Y.’s team, but it turns out, one of the other teams got a perfect score.They also assumed the individual testing would be a walk in the park, since it was all curriculum, that wasn’t the story. When we got our scores back, their scores were (in order):96%, 80%, 76% and 56%( I was the 96%). So I just hope my teammates learn their lesson next time. I remember at my first math competition, every time our team got a question wrong they would groan and put their heads in their hands and start blaming each other. So you should always have good sportsmanship because getting in first place isn’t always the most important thing at a math competition or really anything it’s about having fun and learning something new.
Finally, practicing before your competition is a necessity if you want to do well. If you want to lose, then don’t practice. At my most recent math competition, I did very well since I was working on multiple problems the previous week. Practicing is an opportunity to be better than you are now.
Not only for math competitions, but really for anything. I could tell the rest of my team didn’t practice much since they did terribly on the individual testing.
I did the best on my team since I practiced each week. When the problems are familiar, it is easier to overcome the pressure of the competition.