For new teachers

For new teachers: what to do

  • If you’re at all interested, and would like to receive emails about the competition, register yourself and your school This doesn’t commit you to anything. The emails circulated so far this year are archived here. You might also like to check the list of schools already registered; since the schools are ordered by postcode this will show you any local schools.
  • It’s a competition for school children of any age, so it’s run at four different levels: Foundation, Intermediate and Advanced. To get an idea of what the problems are like, and how the levels differ, have a look at last year’s papers (here). As a rough guideline:
    • Breakthrough level is for KS2
    • Foundation level is for KS3
    • Intermediate level is for KS4
    • Advanced level is for KS5
  • If you decide (in principle, subject to demand etc) to enter competitors for the Advanced level, then you need to arrange a 2.5-hour slot in a quiet room where you can invigilate them some time in early February. (The date will be announced here.) If you only want to enter at Foundation or Intermediate levels, it’s all up to you (because it’s not part of the national competition for places in round 2). We recommend a total of two hours, but if you want you can even split the test across lesson times.
    • It’s all free so you don’t need to think about money; but you will need to print off your own papers.
    • Before the test it’s very helpful for competitors to have gone through some past papers, and you may want to give general advice about how to think through a problem. There’s some material to help with this here.
    • After the test, you’ll mark your own B-, F- and I-level entries (with detailed guidance from us), but we’ll mark A-level entries centrally. We’ll issue Gold, Silver and Bronze certificates for the best performances, and the best 16 across the country will be invited to a residential round 2 in late March, where the four members of the UK team for the International competition will be chosen.