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## How to Participate in Mathematics Competitions in Primary Schools

**Introduction**

Participating in a math competition allows students to sharpen their problem-solving skills and serves to generate interest in mathematics among themselves. Every year there are several math olympiads that elementary school students can participate in and some of the most prominent ones are listed in this article.

The Asia Pacific Mathematics Olympiad for Primary Schools 2009 (APMOPS 2009) is organized annually from April to May by the Hwa Chong Institution-Aphelion Consortium. This math competition for 6th graders has two rounds.

The first round of the competition is usually held in April and is held in different centers in the Asia-Pacific region. The competition held in Singapore is commonly known as the Singapore Mathematics Olympiad for Primary Schools (SMOPS).

**Awards for SMOPS**

Students compete for the following awards at SMOPS.

1) The top 10 individual awards, given to the top 10 scorers.

2) 3 Honorable Mentions team awards and 5 Honorable Mentions individual awards.

3) Top 3 Center Awards, given to the three schools with the highest combined score of their top three students.

In addition, students who are ranked in the top 10% or the top two hundred participants (whichever is lower) will be invited to write the second round of the competition known as the Asia-Pacific Mathematical Olympiad (APMOPS) 2009. This year’s competition was held on Saturday 30 May 09.

**APMOPS 2009**

During APMOPS, students have the opportunity to interact with other mathematically talented students from different countries. They also compete for the forty individual prizes that will be awarded on the afternoon of May 30, 2009.

**Format of the APMOPS Competition**

The APMOPS competition challenges students to complete six questions in two hours.

No math tables or calculators are allowed for the contest. Students must show all work for each question. Each question carries 10 marks and the total score is 60 marks.

**Singapore National Mathematical Olympiad (NMOS)**

The NMOS is a competition organized by the NUS High School of Mathematics and Science. This competition is designed to spark students’ interest in mathematics. This competition is usually held in the months of July to August and welcomes students from Primary 5 and below to participate to challenge their mettle with other mathematics. Different prizes are awarded to students who have achieved quality scores in the competition. Registration usually starts in May each year.

**American Mathematics Contest 8 (AMC 8)**

The American Mathematics Contest 8 is the first in a series of mathematics competitions organized by the Mathematical Association of America and is administered by Maths Oasis Pte Ltd in Singapore. This international competition welcomes students interested in mathematics and enrolled in 8th or 2nd year of secondary school and below to participate.

Students get to challenge themselves with math that goes beyond what they typically encounter in school and can experience a wide spectrum of topics available in Middle School Math. The multiple choice format of this quiz means that many students can attempt it. Students must complete 25 questions within a forty minute period and there is no penalty for incorrect answers.

More than one hundred thousand students participate in the AMC 8 competition every year. Students who score high in this competition can expect to challenge themselves in a competition at higher levels, such as the AMC 10. AMC 12 or the mathematics exams of the American Invitational. These are the various math competitions and olympiads that Singaporean students can participate in annually from primary school levels.

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