With 268 participants, 34 international and bilingual schools, all across 11 different countries, the event was much bigger than I expected. Joining with only three students (1 team for Grade 6 ), we were like little tadpoles in a big pond. Schools from as far as Nigeria and across Asia came in prepared, (not to mention the 20 young mathematicians from the Philippines) I knew that they did not fly hundreds or even thousands of miles just to go back home empty handed. I imagine how I felt at that time.
The competition went like this, students were group at their grade level and took a paper and pencil test and out of all the contestants only the top 10 per level will be picked. The final round was the highlight of the competition. Scores of all students in a group were added (the top 4 team advanced to the next level). The biggest challenge came at the next round…mind bending questions.
As the dust settled and the sound of the thunderous crowd mellowed, Team RCIS, the tadpole in a big POND came as the first runner-up. Aside from the team’s victory, we also grabbed 10th and 3rd place in individual student’s performance.
I am proud to share this as their mentor.
*This article is a contribution of the Filipino who trained and mentored his students in the International Math Challenge hosted by Pan-Asia International School, February 25, 2017 at the King Mongkut Institute of Technology in Ladkrabang. His Year 6 students placed second in the team competition category and 2 of his 3 students placed third and tenth in overall ranking.