Local kids may set a new world record in Mathematics

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Image taken by Domenic Gorin, Infinity Studios 20198BIM
Image taken by Domenic Gorin, Infinity Studios 20198BIM

What stands at 1.8metres, uses 36 096 rubber bands and takes 59 people to make? The World's Largest Level 3 Menger Sponge, of course.

The Menger sponge aka the Menger cube, Menger universal curve, is a mathematical concept relating to a fractal curve.

Mathematics has it's uses, but many of us aren't fond of learning about this subject which may bring back memories of boring classes and exam stress.

For anyone who finds Mathematics complex, boring or difficult to understand, these students aim to prove that it can be fun too.

As part of the 2019 NumberSense User Group Conference, a number of Grade 4, 5, and 6 students participated in the Standard Bank/Shikaya NumberSense Programme.

With the help of Stellenbosch University, students built what is believed to be a record-breaking Level 3 Menger Sponge in the fastest time. The record attempt was held at the Zeitz Museum in Cape Town in early May.

This Menger Sponge consists of a total of 18 048 cardboard squares, which were held together by 36 096 rubber bands. The task took only 6 hours to complete, which left time to spare for onlookers and delegates to admire the result.

The NumberSense Mathematics Programme was created by Aarnout Brombacher who has years of experience in early grade mathematics teaching with curriculum and material development.

The aim of this Programme is to provide support to the growing community of Number Sense Mathematics Programme users. The Programme also designs and implements large scale oral and digitally administered assessments.

The specifications of the Menger Sponge have been submitted to the Guinness Book of Records for approval. The official announcement will be made following the listing in the next couple of months.

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