Did you know there was any such thing? I didn't, but I learned about it, and the cool website, from Denise at Let's Play Math.
Apparently World Math Day takes place on the first Wednesday in March - this year that is March 5. WorldMathDay.com invites people from around the world to join them in a "celebration of numbers". Individual students and/or classes of students can register, free of charge, at the World Math Day site to participate in a "quest to set a world record in answering mental arithmetic questions" on March 5, 2008. You can register now and practice at the site until the big day. Registration is fast and easy.
If you register as a school you can create accounts for each of your children/student ages 5-18. You get a sheet of sign-in cards to print and cut and distribute to your students. After World Math Day the site will forward the teacher a snapshot of how your students performed, as well as a full report of the event. Teachers can also access their accounts for student results at any time and can print out certificates for the students after the event.
The first thing students get to do is to create an avatar for themselves. Once that is done they can start to play. The computer searches the globe, and shows it on a world map, to find real life people for them to play against in mental arithmetic games. They get 60 seconds to answer as many questions as possible. The program has a ranking system that tracks how the student performs and matches them against students with similiar abilities. As you play you can gain points - the more you play the more points you get. Students can use these points to add special details to their avatars.
Besides opportunities for practicing basic math facts there is also the chance to learn about time zones and different places around the world as you take notice of where the people are that you are playing against at different times.
I hope you take the time to check it out. I think it's going to be fun. Let me know what you think.