√-1 equals to imagery number “i”, so the picture means “I love math”.

As a math lover, I joined almost every math club in my school, including High School Math Competition Club. Compare to the intensive training of SEAMC, this club is more relaxing. This kind of chill environment is good for our creative thinking. In this club, we often do some tricky questions which require not only ability in maths but also creativity and strong logic. For example,

A man in my neighbourhood has three daughters. One day when I asked their ages he said, “The product of their ages is 36.”

When I still couldn’t find their ages he said, “Ok. I’ll give you another clue: the sum of their ages is same as the number of my house.”

I knew the number but still couldn’t calculate their ages. So the man gave me the last clue, “My eldest daughter lives upstairs.”

Finally, I was able to figure out their ages. How old are they?

Under the condition of the question, to have a product of 36, there are only these ways below:

1 × 1 × 36 = 36

1 × 2 × 18 = 36

1 × 3 × 12 = 36

1 × 4 × 9 = 36

1 × 6 × 6 = 36

2 × 2 × 9 = 36

2 × 3 × 6 = 36

3 × 3 × 4 = 36

The second clue is the sum of daughters’ ages:

1 + 1 + 36 = 38

1 + 2 + 18 = 21

1 + 3 + 12 = 16

1 + 4 + 9 = 14

1 + 6 + 6 = 13

2 + 2 + 9 = 13

2 + 3 + 6 = 11

3 + 3 + 4 = 10

The narrator knew the number of the man’s house, so the only way that this clue didn’t help him is if the sum is 13 because it appears twice. Therefore we know that the ages of the three daughters are either 1, 6, and 6, or 2, 2, and 9.

The third clue is the eldest daughter, so the ages of them are 2, 2, and 9.

The question above is just a simple example. These questions are more like puzzles. At first, I found it tricky to solve these kinds of questions. But then I found that they can really train our logic and creativity effectively which helps a lot in maths area.

I also made lots of friends in HS Maths club. It is not only a place to solve questions, but also a place to collaborate and to communicate. My partner is a really nice Korean boy called Jack, we always work together and share our opinions towards maths.

Some questions we solved during the club time. 🙂