Victoria University Maths Challenge
On the last day of the school holidays, eight Wellington High School students from years 10 to 13 headed to Victoria University to participate in a full day of fun Maths challenges. They competed against the best Maths students from the Wellington region which the university hopes will stimulate their learning and encourage them to consider a Mathematics career.
Over recent years the Maths Challenge has grown in popularity, so the students were part of a massive group of over 170 young mathematicians that consisted of a mixture of ages and genders. They were supported by teachers Cara Weston (organiser), Tony Cairns and Murray Chisholm.
A new feature of the day was the creative challenge to build Maths art out of paper, pens, scissors and glue. Some built Pi-rate ships, Pi (desserts) and Pythagorean pyramids but Wellington High School went one better to extol the golden ratio in an origami design.
Students reported that they had a great time and that it was fun to network with other classmates, cohorts and colleges. Congratulations Michelle Duffield, Shagnik Chakravarty, Zebedee Schrader, Brynn Wilde, Luke Roeven, Daniel Sellen, Rudri Vyas and Michael Edmeades.
Moa Bones & Science Minions
Anna Liu, and ‘Science Minions’ Ryan, Riley and Zoe descended deep into the subterranean storerooms of Te Papa today to measure the world’s largest bird bones – t he giant extinct elephant bird from Madagascar and our own dearly departed Moa.
By comparing the length and girth of the Moa bones with ancestral relatives – the tinamou – lately from South America – the speciation and adaptive radiation of NZ flightless birds became clearer
. Thanks to the expert guidance of vertebrate curator Alan Tennyson and the extensive collections of Te Papa Anna could place the metre long leg bones in context beside the 9 cm. Tinamou leg bones and discover that the kiwi’s closest relative was not the emu, but the distant elephant bird in far-off Madagascar.
Anna Liu and minions are measuring the bones of many native and introduced species from whales and seals to the odd elephant stored at Te Papa – our thanks to Alan and the team from Te Papa for a glorious afternoon of Science and a unique access to the rarest and largest bird fossils in the world.