Training Inquisitive Minds

Gifted mathematicians from primary schools across the central region came together at St Joseph’s Primary School, Merewether to participate in the Inquisitive Minds Out of the Box Workshop.

The one-day workshop brought together a number of Year 5 and 6 students from St John’s Primary School, LambtonSt James' Primary School, Kotara SouthSt Columba’s Primary School, AdamstownHoly Family Primary School, Merewether BeachSt Patrick’s Primary School, WallsendSt Therese's Primary School, New Lambton and St Brigid’s Primary School, Raymond Terrace.

The students were also joined by Year 9 Mathematics students from St Pius X High School, Adamstown, who acted as facilitators and markers.

Presented in partnership with the Mathematical Association of NSW (MANSW), the workshop engages students with a number of hands-on, brainteasers to teach them new problem-solving strategies and to understand the need to double check answers. Students worked in pairs solving mathematical problems to try to earn the highest number of points and take home the Inquisitive Minds medallion.

“My favourite thing about the day was doing the maths relay with someone from another school,” said Mia Stanger, Year 6 student from St Joseph’s, Merewether. 

“I was surprised how well we worked together and we managed to get a lot of questions correct.”

“Some things I liked about participating in Inquisitive Minds were meeting new kids, seeing friends from other schools, working on challenging maths questions and working on the building challenge,” said Jack Webber, another Year 6 student from St Joseph’s. 

The presenters for the day, Derek and Debbie, provided continual encouragement to the students, helping them to be persistent in solving difficult problems and not give up.

“It was a highly engaging day where the hall was a tangible buzz as each team was focused on the mathematical challenge at hand,” said Belinda Pearson, Learning Support Assistant at St Joseph’s, Merewether.

“The students were taught some new strategies for working mathematically and for calculating answers correctly. 

“Every student was excited, engaged and enthusiastic in this mathematical experience.”

Congratulations to the winners on the day and to all the students involved for their wonderful cooperation and engagement.

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