Math has never been one of my strong suits and even as a fully grown adult there’s no way I could compete in the Mental Calculations Championship. I find myself having to count on my fingers for what others may consider smaller tasks. My younger brother is completely different than I am, and he has a literal Ph.D. in Mathematics, so I understand doing math in your head it’s a concept some get, and others, like me, just don’t. So, I know the math skills a child has isn’t entirely based on how one was parented, but with this 8-year-old math whizz, I do wonder a little bit.
Back in November, news broke that 8-year-old Zury Tlapanco Reyes is really someone to watch in the math world, even as young as she is. She nailed something with what looked like such little effort that makes my brain itch when she won first place at the 2019 world mental calculation held in China earlier this year. She solved 70 math problems in what witnesses call “lightning speed” using just her brain. She wasn’t allowed to write anything down, look anything up, or call a friend for help. And no calculator.
According to Forbes Mexico, the Aloha Mental Arithmetic School student was able to solve all 70 math questions in just 5 minutes and managed to find the correct solutions for each one. Originally from Tampico, Tamaulipas, Zury was awarded the Grand Champion award at the competition in China.
👏🏻Niña Tamaulipeca gana mundial de calculo en China 🇨🇳 Resolvió 70 problemas matemáticos en cinco minutos, con cero…
If this wasn’t impressive enough to make us wonder why our kids are not achieving things to this level, Zury said that this was the first time she participated in this type of event at an international level. She downplayed to reporters just how massive this achievement is because she says that it’s something she enjoys doing anyway.
Talking to the reporters, Zury said that she feels “very happy and proud of having won the Grand Champion,” which just happens to be the highest and most prestigious award in the whole contest. Zury said that she prepared well for the competition, and that’s why it wasn’t too hard for her – and probably why she killed it in 5 minutes.
Of course, her parents were very proud of all she achieved and supported her dreams in continuing her love of math. I would be, too, if Zury was my daughter because, as I said, my capabilities of doing math inside my head stop at simple addition.