Team Maths Challenge 2016
The LGS maths team for Years 7 to 9 competed in the regional round of the ‘Team Mathematics Challenge’ (run by the UK Mathematics Trust) on March 21. The event was held at Grace Dieu Manor School, and involved teams from 22 different schools from in or near Leicestershire. The competition lasted all day, and tested the students’ team work, knowledge, speed of problem solving and ingenuity in finding clever ways to solve difficult questions.
In our team were Matthew Drury and Haoran Cao, Alan Luke and Kishan Modi. They had prepared for the format of the competition with its very different rounds by practising with questions from previous years, learning to balance the need for speed with the importance of being accurate; they had also learned by heart very many square numbers, cube numbers, triangular numbers, and so on.
LGS began in confident form, gaining full marks in the first of the four rounds, as students solved ten problems together as a group. Next was the crossnumber (a crossword but with digits instead of letters) with one pair of students working on the across clues and the other on the down clues, and we had another strong result in this. The third round involves the answer to one question being used in the next question, and so on, so an early error could be disastrous; thankfully most of the round was perfect for us, and one misread question was, along with the questions that depended on it, rapidly corrected right at the end. After a slow start to the final round, we showed tremendous accuracy in getting 28 consecutive questions correct, which meant that every round had in fact gone very well for us on the day.
LGS were announced as the winners of the contest, with an overall score of 94%. In second place were Soar Valley College, with 83%. (Other teams further back included Leicester Grammar School, Repton School and Loughborough High School.) Our boys performed extremely well to win by such a clear margin, and as the winners they will now go forward to the national final, which will be held in London in June. This is the sixth time in the last nine years that LGS has won this contest at the regional level, and therefore gone on to represent the region in London in the national final.