Maths Week in Sha Tin College took place this year from the 23rd to the 27th of April. It began with a game of Craypots, where Year 7s participated in a simulated cray-fishing game that involved, as Mr Wilson said, “real life probability”.
As the week progressed, other events, such as the Dragon Maths Challenge, integrated mathematics into activities often thought to be unrelated to the area of study. Designed to ‘encourage students to exercise while they do maths’, Dragon Maths required students to make mad sprints up and down the hall in a race to answer progressively difficult word problems. Needless to say, the Year 9 students who took part pushed both their physical and mathematical abilities to the limit during the hour of intense competition.
The treasure hunt also took place again this year, with lower school students roaming the school in their efforts to solve problems hidden at different locations; these included opposite bathroom entrances, behind potted plants, or simply at the edges of corridors. After locating a card, students had to solve the puzzle provided to receive clues about where the next card would be. This fun and interactive alternative to doing textbook exercises in the classroom was popular amongst participating student. Jason Chow of 8X1 commented that the competitive edge of the activity ‘made [them] more enthusiastic about the maths involved.’ With a total of 12 rounds and prizes awarded to the fastest groups, the treasure hunt proved to be a great success.
However, what made 2018’s Maths Week unique was a new trading game introduced to Year 10 students. As part of the game, students were assigned one of eight countries and tasked with the objective of becoming the richest nation in the room by the end of the game. Occasional news flashes, indicative of stock market fluctuations, punctuated the game and helped students connect maths with economics, reminding students of the real-world applications of mathematics. Each group was also provided with different starting material, which forced negotiation and communication between students. “It was great fun because it required lots of critical thinking” reflected Belle Ho of 10P2.
Maths Week is one of Sha Tin College’s many annual events and is a way by which we celebrate of the importance of mathematics in our daily lives. Through the array of activities and events hosted by the maths department, students were able to gain a fresh perspective on mathematics – one which will inevitably renew their passion towards the subject.
Written by Tanaya Wagh 12D2 and Bobo Chan 12D1
Copy Edited by Leeann Tong 12G1 and Martha Chow 12X1