When people reminisce on their experiences in their own maths class, I often hear one of two things – either they really enjoyed maths or, more commonly I hear that they hated maths and don’t ever want to do it again.
This year the Maths Department continued with our focus on improving students’ confidence in maths so that we have more people enjoy their time in maths. It can be hard to believe, but when a student enjoys maths, they normally enjoy the challenge that maths provides. So in order for us to improve our confidence in maths, we have to teach the joy of the challenge. Maths is not meant to be done fast, and it is not simply about learning facts and recalling at speed. It is about problem solving; pattern hunting; forming questions; and making links to other concepts. Given the difficulties involved with this year, I think the students did well. We look forward to continuing the messages of growing your brain and understanding that it is normal to be challenged by Maths; we just need to persevere and allow time to explore ideas and learn deeply.
This year we competed in the Year 11 Casio Calculator Competition. This is one of the few events that went ahead in this crazy year filled with pandemics and lockdowns. The Hornby High team was composed of four committed and conscientious students Lauren, Mubasshira, Faith, and Wajihah.
As with last year the Cantamath competition was cancelled due to Covid, nevertheless we still worked with our young mathematicians to help prepare them for this year’s cantamath competition on the off chance that it did run.The students did well and had some fun. The students involved were: Aliyah, Dylan, Tom, Nolan, Garick, Vanshika, Nishitha, Axle, Khush, and Tobey.
With the cancellation of the cantamath competition we still ran a mock competition within the school so that these students could showcase their mathematical prowess. All teams had an impressive score, but I would like to have a special mention of our Year 10 team that broke through the Hornby High personal best and earned a final score of 65 points.
The staff of the Maths Department for 2021 were Mr Werder, Mr Daines, Mrs Buenaventura, Mr Carter, Mr Gibson, Mrs Costello, and Mr Rees. We wish all our senior students the very best of luck for their external NCEA exams. We would also like to wish everyone a pleasant and safe summer holiday.