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Maths - Number crunching

A world record for mental arithmetic questions answered in one day has been smashed, with the help of pupils at St Margaret's Academy in Livingston.

The record of 182 million was wiped out, with 371 St Margaret's pupils contributing to a worldwide number crunch of 452,682,682 questions answered in one day.

The pupils managed 117,084 correct answers in that time, 15,000 of which were achieved at home after school. Almost 9,500 minutes were devoted to the task and in practice sessions Erin Curle managed 3,660 correct answers, while on the day of the challenge, Daniel Morris amassed 2,076 right answers.

Maths teacher Jamie McIntyre paid tribute to the pupils' enthusiasm and commitment, saying: "We couldn't have been so successful without the great support of the whole maths department and colleagues from departments across the school who supported and encouraged the pupils in many different ways."

Results suggested that not only was the event fun, but it was also educational. Improvement in pupils' mental arithmetic skills from the start of practice to the final results was around 117 per cent.

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