Saturday, 25 June 2011

NUS High Selection Test

This is posted by LL ♥♦♣♠

Today I took the NUS High Selection Test. The 1 1/2 hr Math paper was okay (easier than NMOS) but the 1 1/4 hr Science paper was slightly hard. The Math paper had 7 pages (1st page was the cover page, last page was a blank page) and 23 non-MCQ questions where you have to shade the integer answer, and the Science paper had 30 MCQ questions and 24 pages (1st page was cover page, last page was a periodic table which I do not know how to use - I think there was 1 question about it which I guessed the answer).

The first few Math questions are easy, like P6 Math questions. One of the easiest Math questions is, the average of 3 numbers is given, you add another 2 numbers and you get another given average, you have to find the sum of the 2 numbers added. There are varying marks for different questions. I think the harder questions carry 4 marks.

One of the Science questions which I can remember is, there are two containers filled with hot water: one is a metal container with wooden casing, the other is a complete metal container. Both containers have a thermometer inside. Choose the correct line graph for the temperature, from the 4 or 5 choices given.

Tuesday, 21 June 2011

2011 China Girls Math Olympiad

This is posted by Lim Min's mum.

Singapore will be sending 8 girls to the 2011 China Girls Mathematical Olympiad (CGMO), to be held in ShenZhen (China) from 30 July to 3 August. The CGMO was originally established as a regional competition for female high school students from China. Several years ago China expanded the competition to countries from around the world, with the USA, Russia, United Kingdom and Singapore among the invitees.

After 2 days of selection tests (comprising 4-hr papers of 4 questions each) last Saturday and Sunday, the following girls are selected:

Raffles Institution: Zhang Aidi, Lydia Liu, Lim Min and Lee Si Ying (all Year 5s)
NUS High: Surya Mathialagan (Year 2) and Tan Pin Lin (Year 4)
Raffles Girls' School (Sec): Belinda Ding (Year 4) and Dorette Ong (Year 3)

All the best to Team Singapore, and hope the girls can better last year's results of 1 Silver and 4 Bronzes.

Sunday, 19 June 2011

Mistakes in onSponge P5 Conquer Problem Sums

This is posted by Lim Li ☺☻

After I had practised the SMO Junior questions and after my teacher asked us to complete the P5 thinkingMath@onSponge Conquer Problem Sums, I realised that something was wrong ...

Page 149.
Based on Pythagoras' theorem, AB is 8sqrt(10). But without knowing Pythagoras' theorem, a student will calculate AB = (28 x 18)/12 = 42???

Page 148.
Based on Pythagoras' theorem again, how can the three lengths of a triangle be 15, 20 and 30???

Page 146.
If the lengths of the triangle are 8, 10 and 14, the area should be sqrt(s(s-8)(s-10)(s-14)) where s = (8+10+14)/2. Hence, area = 16sqrt(6). But then, how can the height be 7 if the base is 14???

Page 145.
How can the hypotenuse be 8, which is shorter than the base length of 20???

There are more mistakes in the book, which I am too lazy to scan and highlight in this post.

Wednesday, 15 June 2011

IMO 2011 Singapore Team

This is posted by LJ's mum.

This year's Singapore IMO team comprises 1 JC2, 4 JC1s and 1 Sec 4. There is a high chance that IMO participants will get selected again the following year, as long as they qualify to take part again. Besides the obvious fact that they are among the top in the National Team (consisting of typically 20-25 students), they have also undergone intensive training in preparation for the IMO, and hence, are more well prepared for the selection tests. This means that, for 2012, it is likely that 5 places will be taken up by the current team members (unless, some of them also qualify for other International Science Olympiads and decide to partake in another competition).

The younger National Team members (current Year 3s and 4s) who aspire to be part of the IMO Team will probably have to work extremely hard, to secure a place in IMO Team 2012! I think Lim Jeck is very fortunate that he was first selected into the IMO Team in Sec 2. The competition to earn a coveted place in the IMO Team was probably less stiff then. As more Maths Olympiad competitions are organised for the primary level, kids get exposed to Maths Olympiad at an early age, and with more primary school kids taking part in the SMO (for secondary and JC levels), the quality of the Junior/Senior/National Team members will just get better. This cannot be a bad thing, it means the quality of our IMO Team will only improve, and we are likely to clinch more Golds in the future (special note: Singapore has won ONLY a single Gold medal in 1996, after taking part in IMO for 23 times so far).

The above are the leaders and observers accompanying the team to the 52nd IMO held in Amsterdam, the Netherlands, from 12 to 25 July. The Leader and Observer A will be there earlier, as they are involved in the jury meeting to select 6 questions from the shortlisted IMO questions. After which, they are barred from any contact with the participants and Observer Bs since they will have prior knowledge to the selected IMO questions. Before the competition begins, the Deputy Leader and Observer Bs are allowed to spend some time with the participants, it could be to give more training, encouragement or pep talk (I think the last part is crucial, as you normally watch on TV, the sports coaches give pep talk to players, during important competitions).

To ensure fairness in marking, the Leader and Deputy Leader (and sometimes one Observer B) are permitted to participate in the marks coordination session, with two Coordinators assigned by IMO Foundation. This will ensure that the participants' solutions have been fairly assessed (meaning, you don't have to worry that your solutions are not clearly understood by uninitiated markers, or that marks are unfairly deducted).

Some countries even send Observer Cs, who are allowed to stay at the same site as the participants.

To know what typically happens throughout the IMO, you can read an interesting account of the 51st IMO by a UK student here, and by a UK leader, here. These diaries mentioned the disqualification of the North Korea team.

Monday, 13 June 2011

More Training .. Even More Training

Off to 12-day residential camp, from 13 to 24 June, at NUS High, for IMO training.

After that, another 2 weeks' training from 27 June to 12 July, before flying to Amsterdam (Netherlands), where the IMO is held from 15 to 25 July.

Friday, 10 June 2011

Letter from NUSH

This is posted by LJ's mum.

Just want to comment on the letters from NUS High. We have received a number of letters (this year and last 2 years) from NUS High, informing us of Lim Jeck going for National Team Selection Test or IMO National Team Training (see letter below) or some other overseas competitions. I always find the letters rather impersonal - there is no name mentioned. It is as if the letter is a generic one to be sent to the entire cohort, when in actual fact it was sent to only a few selected students. Why don't they add more personal touch, by naming 'Lim Jeck' in the letter instead of 'your child', addressing the letter to 'Dear Parent/Guardian of Lim Jeck' instead of 'Dear Parent/Guardian'? Sometimes I look at the letters and I wonder if they are indeed addressed to me, or to some other parents?

In contrast, the letter below from MOE seems more personalised.

Thursday, 9 June 2011

NUS 2010/2011 Exam Results

Yay! I got another A+ for my NUS modules.
2010/2011 semester 2 (Jan to May 2011) exam result.

2010/2011 semester 1 (Aug to Dec 2010) exam result.

Saturday, 4 June 2011

Teachers' Comments

This is posted by LJ's mum.

Lim Jeck's various subject/mentor teachers have given their comments on him, in the progress report of Semester 1, 2011. It is apparent from the comments that Lim Jeck has shown aptitude for Maths, Physics, Chemistry and Computing. However, he tends to be less proactive in the other subjects that he has less passion in. He is also too reserved and quiet.

Besides putting more efforts in his weaker subjects, I think he should also learn to be more articulate, as one may have the best technical knowledge but it would be in vain if one is not able to express one's thoughts, ideas and views clearly to others.

Thursday, 2 June 2011

Wednesday, 1 June 2011

SMO 2011 (Open Section) Answers

SMO 2011 Open Special Round Participants List
1. 1080
2. 300
3. 8
4. 10
5. 1
6. 8748
7. 27
8. 504
9. 71
10. 8
11. 38
12. 1936
13. 10
14. 50
15. 34220
16. 32
17. 6029
18. 2112
19. 6034
20. 95004
21. 48
22. 8
23. 38
24. 30
25. 2

National Average Statistics

SMO (Open) Previous Years' Cut-off Points (Inclusive of Round 2 scores)
2010 Gold (38), Silver (9), Bronze (6), HM (5)
2009 Gold (27-29), Silver (9), Bronze (6), HM (5)
2008 Gold (27), Silver (11), Bronze (10), HM (6)
2007 Gold (19-20), Silver (9), Bronze (6), HM (5)

2011 Gold (18), Silver (9), Bronze (6), HM (5) Cut-off for Round 2: 9
My Score: 23+50