A group of First and Second Year Mathematicians spent the morning working to develop their problem solving skills. They were challenged to work collaboratively (in pairs or threes) to try to solve a variety of unfamiliar problems. They had to use their mathematical skills in different ways and were encouraged to discuss their approaches with others. The problems tackled included working out how many presents there are in total in the Twelve Days of Christmas, how many squares there are in total on a chess board, what is the smallest number of moves needed to solve the Tower of Hanoi and what is the size of the box that can be made from an A4 sheet of card with the biggest volume. The students were also challenged to think about how their answers could be extended or adapted to solve related problems.
Geoff Smith, Head of Mathematics