Commitment and brains add up to a winning formula
A LLANELLI primary school has divided and conquered in a national maths championship.
Pentip Primary School's Year 6 class beat more than 2,000 other schools to win the top school category for Wales in the Four Nations Maths Challenge.
The competition saw schools from all over Britain compete in a two-day challenge using an online maths program to answer as many questions as they could against the clock.
After being crowned champions, 10-year-old Ethan Rees, who achieved the highest score in the school and ninth highest score in Wales, accompanied head teacher Anne Murawski to London for the trophy presentation, where they met Lord Knight and had a guided tour of the House of Lords.
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Ethan said: "It was fun to visit and very big. We went in some places that other people cannot go in.
"I enjoyed the maths challenge — it made maths better."
Classmate Corey Williams, 10, added: "The maths challenge was fun and is different from doing work from a textbook."
Year 6 also produced other high- scoring youngsters, with three of Ethan's classmates also coming in the top 100 in the country — Jacob Mills, 11, Damian Skorza, 10, and Ashley Thieme, 11.
Year 6 teacher and school maths co-ordinator, Amanda Heywood, organised the children during the challenge.
She said: "The enthusiasm of the children was fantastic.
"It bonded them together as a class as they were working towards one aim and it really brought out the best in all of them. They were competing against children in other countries and against all age levels, including those from colleges."
Mrs Murawski said: "The children worked really hard during the three days of the competition and I am really proud of their achievement at becoming the top school in Wales.
"They are now looking forward to their next challenge in March when they can compete in the world maths championships."
The national competition is run and organised by the E-Learning Foundation, Mathletics and the NAACE.