Dr Oakley accompanied the team to the event, which was held at Keele University on Thursday 23rd November. They knew that they would be up against some very tough opposition.
In the first round, teams have 40 minutes to solve a series of ten questions and must decide on the best strategy – whether to work in pairs, as a group or individually. The second round is called ‘Crossnumber’ and is similar to a crossword puzzle but with numerical answers. Teams work in pairs, one with the across clues and the other with the down clues, and must complete the grid using logic and deduction but without communicating directly with the other pair.
The final round is a ‘shuttle’ against the clock. Teams are divided into two pairs, one of whom is given Questions 1 and 3, while the other is given Questions 2 and 4. Question 1 can be solved independently of the others, but the answer to each subsequent question is dependent on the previous answer.
The Shrewsbury team now look forward to competing in the National Finals in Westminster on 6th February – the fourth year in a row that we have reached this stage in the competition.
The four members of the team were also among 34 Shrewsbury School mathematicians from across all year groups who were recently awarded Gold Certificates in the Senior Maths Challenge paper. A total of 139 of our pupils sat the paper on 8th November, together with thousands of others nationwide. In addition to the 34 pupils who were awarded Gold Certificates, a further 33 won Silver Certificates and 47 won Bronze.
Isaac Dai scored an outstanding full marks (the second consecutive year he has achieved this) and Ben Yang (Rt LIV) scored a very impressive 120/125.