Maths Week keeps students on toes

|     Khairil Hassan     |

JERUDONG International School (JIS) hosted the annual Maths Week in its Junior and Senior Schools recently.

In the Junior School, the event was celebrated with activities such as Shape Hunt in Nursery; Fraction Art and Problem Solving competitions in Year 2; Mondrian Art Launch in Year 3; 2D Maths Spelling Games in Year 4; Murder Mystery ‘Shape Up!’ and 3D Shape Hunting in Year 5; and a Maths Treasure Hunt in Year 6.

The activities were held throughout the week in the students’ lessons in the Junior School.

The theme of this year’s Maths Week in the Senior School was ‘Code Breaking’, where throughout the week Years 7 to 13 students participated in activities celebrating the wonderful world of Mathematics.

Throughout the week, the Maths Faculty hosted Maths workshops held mainly during the students’ lessons and at lunchtimes.

Year 7 Jerudong International School (JIS) students participate in the annual House Sprint Maths competition
The House Sprint Maths competition was judged by teachers from the JIS Senior School Maths Faculty. – PHOTOS: JIS

Maths Week’s activities also included the annual House Sprint Maths competition, a Maths-themed lunchtime quiz and the Maths Week Treasure Hunt held for each Year group in JIS Senior School.

“Maths Week has been a huge success once again. The amazing team of dynamic Maths teachers planned and delivered a huge range of enriching activities from sprint Maths to code breaking,” said JIS Deputy Principal and Academic Director Nicholas Sheehan.

“They (teachers) even got the parents involved every day with a new code challenge. This is curriculum enrichment at its best.”

For the Code Breaking Challenge, students from Years 7 to 10 teamed up to follow a series of clues. The challenge was to break the code in each clue which then led them to another clue. These clues were located in a variety of locations around the school.

Students had to use their knowledge of different ciphers such as Viginere, transposition, Caesar and Pigpen to help them decode the secret message which led them to the next clue.

Each set of clues also included a written challenge which directed them to the next clue.

There were lots of laughter as students tried to solve riddles and quote rhymes such as the ‘Peter Piper Picked a Peck of Pickled Peppers’ before receiving their next Maths problem.

They were especially motivated to crack the codes quickly because of the prizes on offer – vouchers to Escape rooms and Ner Dee Cafe, who kindly sponsored the event.

Year 12 students learnt more about the history behind the Enigma machine used in World War II, and made their own replicas of the machine, enabling them to encode and decode their own secret messages in exactly the same way as it would have been done in the past.

Head of the Maths Faculty Rebecca Baker was delighted with the way the students seized the opportunity to focus on Maths that week.

She said, “This has been a fantastic opportunity for students to get involved in Maths beyond the curriculum, experience code breaking for themselves, and tap into their competitive side.”

JIS students are assessed upon entry to the school and placed into Maths classes appropriate for their current attainment. Thus, those who are more confident in Maths are able to excel and be challenged, while those who take Maths at a slightly slower pace are able to do so.

In Years 7 to 9, the children follow the same curriculum. In Years 10 and 11, some study Additional Maths IGCSE alongside the standard Maths IGCSE.

All the International Baccalaureate (IB) Diploma students will study Maths at Standard or Higher Level, choosing between the Analysis and Approaches Course or the Applications and Interpretations Course.

Some Year 12 students also study for the Further Maths ‘A’ Level course, as well as the ‘A’ Level Maths course.