KUALA LUMPUR, MALAYSIA - Media OutReach - 28 February 2019 - The inaugural edition of the Singapore Math Team Global Challenge (SINGA) was held in Kuala Lumpur, with hundreds of students from over 15 countries in Asia in attendance. The event took place from 17-19th November 2018 and the results were announced in January, with local private institution St. John's International School receiving some top honours in the Individual and Team categories.
Much more than a 'pop quiz', SINGA introduces an exciting and ambitious competition for mathematics students, with individual and team-based problem solving challenges. The contest aims to encourage rich exploration of mathematics through discussion and debate, as well as inspire students to gain intellectual confidence and a passion for learning.
Since the 1980s, the "Singapore method" for mathematics has been hailed as one of the leading learning methodologies in the world. Developed using behavioural science research and influenced by educational psychologists, the system was designed with a strong emphasis on problem solving, and modelling mathematical problems using visual aids. The SINGA competition questions reflected the Singapore school system, noted for the high content of High Order Thinking Skills (HOTS).
Malaysian students certainly weren't there just to make up the numbers, however. Local private school SJIS managed to bag 1 Gold, 3 Silver and 3 Bronze Awards. In the SINGA Individual Category, Ewan Koay Chien Liang (Year 11) grabbed a Gold Award, with two students -- Tan Jia Jun (Y11) and Wayan Wong Jian Wei (Y10) -- securing Silver Awards.
SJIS kept up the good work in the SINGA Team Category: Wayan Wong Jian Wei won the Silver Award, with Ewan Koay, Tan Jia Jun and Brandon Tan (all Y11) bagging the Bronze. The school's incentive plan awarded each of these students a generous cash prize relative to their performance. SJIS prides itself on a holistic education and excellent scholastic tradition, an approach which surely contributed to success in a competition with challenges that went "beyond the classroom".
The students' success is a boon for both SJIS and education in Malaysia. As more emphasis is placed on the teaching and learning of Science, Technology, Engineering & Mathematics (STEM) education in our country, it is heartening to see local students achieve success against international competition.
SINGA is organised by some of the most prestigious names in the Singapore education field: Miss Foo Pau Choo, Dean of the Singapore Scholastic Trust Teachers' Institute (SSTTI), Mr Henry Ong, President of the Singapore Scholastic Trust (SST) & Founder of the Singapore and Asian Schools Math Olympiad (SASMO), and Merlan Nagidulin, General Manager of the Singapore International Math Contests Centre (SIMCC).
St. John's International School or SJIS is a private-funded International School that is an associate La Salle School in collaboration with the La Salle Brothers in Malaysia. SJIS presents a new milieu for students from different cultures and backgrounds to be nurtured in education, sports and extra-curricular activities excellence. Members of SJIS faculty are discerningly selected for their top academic qualifications and methodical competencies. They are chosen for their penchant in the scholastic care of students, and in the consistency in maintaining updated knowledge and practice.