Tryouts and Placement

To be invited to one of our programs, each student must participate in two or more tryout sessions. The purpose of the tryouts is to identify students who are ready for the program and place them to the correct level. 

To qualify for our cornerstone To Infinity and Beyond program, students must demonstrate above-grade-level analytical reasoning abilities. We value kids’ psychological well-being over their mathematical prowess. We want kids to be confident and happy. We want their time with us to be a fun adventure. So, we will only recommend an advanced placement in a higher level with the older kids if we are confident the student can fit into the top third of the class. The last thing we want to happen is to have a brilliant child feel deficient simply because they were put into a group of also talented but older students.

To qualify for the Deep Divers program, students must demonstrate reasonable proficiency in solving advanced middle school contest math problems. Most of the students invited to the Deep Divers program have previously completed To Infinity and Beyond program at least through Level 4 or tested out of it via the tryouts.

To be invited to the Rising Stars program, students must show a history of exceptional success in advanced math contests. For example, all Rising Stars invited to the program last year made AMC-8 Achievement Roll and most of them made AMC-8 Honor Roll in 6th grade or earlier. Upon passing the tryouts, students will be invited to our short Rising Stars Summer Camp, which includes two or three 60-minute sessions with our mentors and teachers.

During the tryouts students are presented with fun math problems and puzzles of varying difficulty. We have plenty of teachers and TA’s at each session with whom the students can communicate in chat, so the tryouts are not too stressful and each student gets personal attention when they need it.

Most tryout sessions are held virtually via proctored Zoom sessions in May-June. We have some additional sessions in July-August to fill the remaining spots, but we cannot guarantee space availability even for qualified students who come to those late tryout sessions.

We review placement of new students in late November, after our teachers have time to observe all students and students show themselves in some internal contests and official math competitions. In some cases, we offer an opportunity to move up a level. 

Most students are automatically invited to the next level at the end of the school year and don’t need to participate in the tryouts again. Students who perform exceptionally well during a year may be offered an opportunity to “jump” a level by participating in the tryouts for a higher level and then working on the material of the level they will skip during the summer.