Four QE boys acquitted themselves very well at the finals of a national Mathematics team competition.
Having first reached the Team Maths Challenge national final by winning their regional heat in March, this year’s entrants built on recent successes by QE, improving on last year’s 17th place by coming 11th out of the 88 finalists. The team, which was drawn from Years 8 and 9, achieved a score of 182 points out of 232.
The UK Mathematics Trust event included a round devoted to Leonhard Euler. Born in Basel, Switzerland, Euler is considered one of the 18th century’s most pre-eminent mathematicians and is known as the ‘father of graph theory’. He notably used graphs when he presented and solved the famous Seven Bridges of Königsberg Problem, demonstrating that it was impossible to devise a journey that would cross all seven bridges in the Prussian city of Königsberg (now Kaliningrad in Russia) only once. Euler also studied topics including number theory, combinatorics (an area of Mathematics concerned primarily with counting), geometry, mathematical analysis, as well as mechanics, fluid theory and music theory.
The team had won the regional heat in March, thus qualifying, for the national final of the competition at the Royal Horticultural Halls. The overall winner at the challenge was Westminster Under School.
Assistant Head of Mathematics Wendy Fung said: “The boys did very well; to reach the National Final is an incredible achievement in itself, as 1,742 teams entered this year’s event.”
In addition to the poster round focusing on Euler, there were the following activity rounds:
- Group circus, which involved working on practical Mathematics problems
- Relay race – a combination of speed across the room and speed at solving problems
- Cross-number challenge, similar to a crossword, but with numbers
- Shuttle, which is a series of mini-relays against the clock.
Calculators were not permitted.
Team captain, Shimaq-Ahamed Sakeel Mohamed, of Year 9, took part alongside Bhunit Santhiramoulesan and Agrim Sharma, of Year 8, and Dan Suciu, of Year 9. Shimaq-Ahamed said: “We had a great day at the challenge and really enjoyed working as a team.”