Striking Mathematics Gold Again!

Students can develop a myriad of life skills when learning mathematics in an open, supportive, and inquiry-driven environment. Developing critical thinking, analytical, and problem-solving skills are at the core of the YCIS Shanghai curricula across all school levels, especially in Mathematics classes. Our Maths department encourages students to participate in mathematics competitions as a more exciting way to challenge logic and problem-solving abilities while exercising a growth mindset. We love to see the students’ confidence grow throughout this process.  

The Caribou Cup is a series of six contests from Canada written approximately once per month, with over 60,000 students taking part worldwide. While students must complete a minimum of five rounds to receive a Cup ranking, they also receive world rankings in the individual rounds.

Recently, over 200 YCIS Pudong students from Years 3–13 took part in Round 1 of the Caribou Mathematics contest, earning stellar results and personal bests, including Sungwoo, who received 1st place in the world!  

The love of mathematics and contest writing is a family affair. Not only did Sungwoo place top in the world for his contest bracket, but his sister, Yeonwoo, in Year 7 also scored a top 3% worldwide result in her contest bracket. Yeonwoo shared that she is not surprised by her brother’s success because he always works hard and tries his best. Similarly, Sungwoo shared his happiness for his sister, saying that he thinks she can do even better next time.  

In the past, YCIS Pudong students were involved in a Shanghai-based contest group called HighFour, where we won the Junior division in 2017. We also participated in the North-East Asia Mathematics Competition (NEAMC) – a pre-requisite for the World Mathematics Championships (WMC). Pre-pandemic, we had four students qualify for WMC through NEAMC, in addition to the four students who won individual event medals at NEAMC. 

Mathematics competitions provide excellent opportunities for students to meet and interact with peers from different places worldwide. Pre-pandemic, in 2019, YCIS Puxi’s Year 9 team (currently Year 13) attended the Maths Olympiad competition held in Beijing, where more than 36 teams competed over two days. They won first place for overall scores, beating reputable schools from across China.  

YCIS Pudong Science and Mathematics teacher Mr Bryan Dennie explains why he thinks maths competitions are so popular with our students: 

It is a mix of traditional maths questions, logic puzzles, and interactive challenges. Although a highly challenging competition, the students enjoy the creativity and accessibility of the questions. Even when students are unable to solve a question successfully, they discuss the questions for days afterwards. They are also excited to check the results board to see their placement against their peers."

We would like to congratulate all of our writers and recognise 42 of our students who scored in the top 15% of worldwide results for Round 1 of Caribou. 

We continue to look at new and exciting opportunities for YCIS Shanghai students across our campuses to take part in highly respected global contests in Mathematics, Science, and Computer Science. It is from the immense interest of students and parents that the contest programme continues to grow. We look forward to the upcoming Caribou rounds and other Maths competitions this academic year, and we cannot wait to see more YCIS Shanghai students collect various accolades! 

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