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By Allen Foster

Bettering yourself should be a more widely accepted endeavor. Yes, there are countless Instagram posts every day that proclaim the importance of being your best you. But let’s be honest, they aren’t about bettering your mind. How many captions read: “Extra-credit math problem selfie”?

If you want to level up in the real world, you need to exercise your mind as well as your body. For the kids who get it, here are five of the best math camps in the country.

Boston College Math Experience

Boston College has a program called the Boston College Math Experience that is designed for high school students who are seeking to be challenged in areas of mathematics and problem-solving. The ideal student will need a recommendation from a teacher in the math department at their high school and should be able to complete pre-calculus level work. The courses will cover material that is not presented in high school math curriculums and the classroom experience will be supplemented by a math workshop emphasizing collaborative problem-solving. Learn more about BCME including deadlines and prerequisites.

MathPath

MathPath is a mathematics enrichment program that is designed for children ages 11 to 14. It is open to students from around the world and is held in a different U.S. city each year. Attending students choose from a wide variety of engaging classes such as “The Mathematics of Origami,” “Non-Euclidean Geometry,” and “Cryptography,” along with activities such as music, pickleball, arts and crafts, and rock climbing. The focus is on fun and creative learning. Learn how to get involved in MathPath.

STEM for Scholars

The University of South Florida in Tampa offers two different STEM programs, one for students entering the 9th or 10th grade and one for students entering 11th or 12th grade. It is a course of study for high-achieving students who wish to expand their knowledge in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. The level one courses cover logic, linear equations, Euler circuits, spiral growth in nature, permutations/combinations, and probability. The level two curriculum will focus on pre-calculus, calculus, differential equations, problem-solving, and proof writing. Find out what it takes to participate in STEM for Scholars.

Mathematics Academy

The University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia offers a non-credit program for exceptional math students in grades 9 through 11. The curriculum covers concepts that are rarely covered at the high school level. It is a proof-oriented program that incorporates lectures, demonstrations, research, and problem sessions. Students who attend a Philadelphia public or charter school may be eligible for free tuition. Find out more about Mathematics Academy.

Camp Euclid

Camp Euclid is unique in that it is an online camp. To enroll, you must be 19 (or younger) and be able to commit to 10+ hours per week for a six week period. Participants will be asked to work on unsolved problems in math (problems that have never been solved before). Additionally, participants will keep a research journal, contribute to the camp blog, and document findings on the camp Wiki. A broadband computer with a webcam and headset microphone is required. Learn what it takes to attend Camp Euclid.

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