Challenging Mathematical Minds

Challenging Mathematical Minds
Senior Maths

On Wednesday, a selection of 70 Year 6 students from across Cheltenham, Gloucester and the Cotswolds came to St Edward’s Senior to participate in a Maths Challenge.

The session was run by Douglas Buchanan, a seasoned maths educator, who travels widely, hosting maths challenges and puzzling workshops. His aim is to make maths meaningful and appealing, by keeping away from the textbook and presenting the subject through problem solving.

The tasks set for the Year 6 pupils ranged from guessing the values in algebra to a ‘Countdown’ inspired numbers game, to the main event where teams were asked to answer a range of questions in 20 minutes! After each question was answered, one of the team players needed to run to markers creating a race-like atmosphere and making the challenge even more thrilling and exciting.

St Edward’s Senior School pupils from Year 10 took on the role of ‘markers’, as they worked their way round the groups, checking the younger children’s work throughout the afternoon. They were also on hand to offer help and support to the Year 6s when they were stumped by a particularly challenging mathematical problem. It was fantastic to see our Year 10s taking on the role of ‘teacher’ and helping the younger pupils to get to grips with problems they didn’t initially understand.

Our Year 10 students displayed a high level of confidence, professionalism and maturity throughout the 90-minute challenge and were truly an excellent representation of our student community. By volunteering during this challenge, they were able to develop their skills in empathy, hard work and agility. They all also demonstrated the values of collaboration and confidence, all of which are integral to the High Performance Learning (HPL) philosophy and framework used in our school.

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Challenging Mathematical Minds