The Canadian Secondary School Mathematics Association (CSSMA) is the first student-led Canada-wide mathematical organization. Founded in 2014, the CSSMA is dedicated to improving mathematics education for all elementary, middle, and high school students. The CSSMA is a federally incorporated not-for-profit organization.
The CSSMA is an initiative for the future – a future where mathematics will be a highly enjoyable subject by the majority of elementary, middle, and high school students, and a future where young mathematicians eagerly gather to solve theoretical and practical problems in society. The CSSMA aims to achieve this goal by primarily organizing fun and exciting mathematical competitions for young mathematicians in Canada. Through developing creative and innovative activities at all of our competitions, we hope to immerse students in a lively atmosphere and as a result, ignite their passion for math. The CSSMA will also vigilantly reach out to and form partnerships with other Canadian mathematical organizations, universities, elementary, high school, and college math educators, and those who use mathematics in businesses. With our partners, we hope to collaboratively work on projects, as well as enhance, build and spread the influence of mathematics around Canada.
The Canadian Secondary School Mathematics Association aims to further the development of mathematics education in Canada across all pre-collegiate levels and also to enhance the learning, discovery, and applications of mathematics in the classroom and beyond.
The CSSMA has a number of competition programs. All of these competitions are designed to change the mathematical landscape in Canada, so that students enter the work force with a stronger mathematical background, more sophisticated problem solving skills, and a greater tendency to think creatively and exploratory to solve whatever problems that may face them, whether mathematical or not.
Our competition programs are designed in such a way that they can be used to complement a student's learning of mathematics from as young as grade 2 all the way up to high school graduation. From grade 2 to grade 8, students can participate in our Young Years Program, an in-class competition directly aligned with curricular standards across Canada. Our problems are not only grade-appropriate in difficulty, but they often ask students to discover some concept or idea for themselves, making the learning process engaging, fun, and exciting. By creating problems aligned with curriculum standards, we help bring the math out of students' workbooks and notes and into their mind and body, making math fun and easy to understand. Through appropriate uses of technology (such as allowing online administration of the Young Years Program), we also hope to maximize the effectiveness of our resources to engage the new generations of tech-savvy students.
From grade 6 to grade 8, students can participate in our Math Stars Competitions Series, a series of nation-wide live competitions focusing more on developing abstract problem-solving skills while still operating within the realm of curricular standards across the country. This competition is designed to help talented students bridge the gap between the basic elementary school math curriculum and more rigorous mathematical thinking required for high school and university, as well as encourage more students to embark on a STEM related field. Through the Math Stars Competition Series, we also aim to let young, aspiring minds realize their potential and gift in mathematics and the sciences, so that we can propel them forward to chase their dreams. Ultimately, the Math Stars Competition Series will help meet the ever increasing demand for STEM related careers in the 21st century.
From grade 8 until high school graduation, students can participate in the Mock Math Challengers and the Team Challenges Program, two programs featuring live, team competitions focusing almost entirely on developing students' problem-solving skills, often unconstrained by curricular standards. These competitions will help provide the pinnacle of students' mathematical experiences, by giving them challenging problems presented in an interesting manner. Through the multiple different types of competitions that we offer (hands-on, fast-paced, bee-style, puzzle hunt, proof style, online challenges, games...etc.), we aim to develop all types of thinking processes in students.
With the advent of technology, CSSMA also offers a variety of Online Competitions. These competitions can either complement the other competition programs described previously (such as in the case of administering the Math Stars National Championship online every year) or they can be entirely new contests on their own (such as the Daily/Weekly Challenges contests). By offering online competitions, anyone with an Internet connection will be able to take part in lively competitions on our organization's website, without having to travel anywhere unlike for a live (ie. in-person) competition. Ultimately, by making our competitions interesting and fun, we believe that most students will find something valuable to gain out of our competitions. We want to build a society in which mathematics is valued by society, rather than feared. We hope that eventually, we will be able to reach out to most students in Canada with our competitions, offline or online.