A team of the youngest and brightest number crunchers in Croydon have been crowned the quickest mathematicians in Europe – even if they are all still in primary school.
Park Hill school’s team of “mathemagicians” competed in the online mental arithmetic challenge on World Maths Day – beating over 32,000 other students across the world.
Students could participate in 100 rounds of the game, which each last 60 seconds. The goal is to answer as many maths questions as possible in a given timeframe.
Teacher Simon Yearley said: “We have participated for 3-4 years now, and the rules change every time. This year we entered our 8-10 year-old group and managed to come first in the UK, first in Europe and second in the world.
“More recently we have participated in a World Spelling Day competition under the same organisers. It was our first time and in a repeat performance we came first in both the UK, Europe and second in the world. One of our girls who participated even came ninth or tenth in the world. The students have done equally well in both competitions and are incredibly able.”
Priya Sivakumaran, 11, who was part of ‘The Dream Team’, said, “ I am interested in maths which is why I wanted to take part in the event. It’s not about the winning, its about taking part.”
She managed to score 83 correct answers in a single 60-second game.
Another keen math pupil, Namithaa Sunil Kumar, 11, who managed to get 53 answers correct, said: “I wanted to take part because I love maths.”
Eight-year-old Adam Shamsul, said: “I loved playing with other players around the world.” Though he competed with students from America, South Africa and Australia he thought the players from India were the hardest to compete with.
The contest lasted 48 hours and began on 1 March 2011 marking World Maths Day. It ended on Wednesday, 3 March. The students battled it out until the very last seconds of the competition.
“Well done to them!” Yarley said, “It’s a pleasure being able to work with such great children who are able to respond in such a way.”