The final group of essays from the Teddy Rocks Maths Competition cover a wide range of mathematical topics explored through a story or puzzle. The competition was organised with St Edmund Hall at the University of Oxford and offers a cash prize plus publication on the university website. It will be running again in early 2021 so be sure to follow Tom (Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, YouTube) to make sure you don’t miss the announcement!

All essays can be read in full (as submitted) by clicking on the title below. If you enjoy any of them please let the author know by leaving a comment!

Wild Possibilities at Mysore Zoo

Aadil tells of his mathematical exploits at the zoo.

1001 Words

Aden tells a maths joke.

Bar Problem

Andrew solves the problem of how to queue at a bar to get served as fast as possible.

Fun with square numbers

Ben teaches us his tricks for working out square numbers quickly.

Time for Prayer

Darrel tells the story of a cardinal’s attempts to minimise prayer time.

Set Theory: My Experience Of Passionate Mathematics

Joseph reminisces about the time he came to love set theory.

Roller Coasters and the Usage of Space

Markus discusses some advanced mathematics in the context of building roller-coasters.

Dungeons and Decimals – The Mathematics of the World’s Greatest Role-Playing Game

Max explores the maths found in his favourite role-playing game.

Can we use mathematics to prevent epidemics?

Naomi explains some of the key parameters used in disease modelling.

Bob’s Maths Test

Natai tells the story of Bob’s maths test and the important lessons learned.

A Crash Course on “a+b(k^0.5)”

Prabhav tackles a problem from the 2012 UKMT Senior Mathematical Challenge.

What are the chances of Harry Kane eating Bird faeces while playing a match in England?

Yeshin has some fun with probability and estimation.

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Very funny essays, I love “Time for prayer”, well done Darrel!

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