In her final year of primary school, Victoria Lund Søraas is accepted into a program for students who want greater challenges in mathematics.
There, the 13-year-old had to take part in a compulsory race in mathematics.
After impressing math teacher and supervisor Skegg Hansen, she is quickly accepted into the more advanced group.
– She has exceptional talent, he says.
Highest scores in all subjects
Now is Victoria’s summer break and in the fall she will start ninth grade at the School of Science and Technology for Young People in Norway (NRG-U). And I have already completed the math exam for the whole high school.
– I signed up for the 1T exam in September last year. Then I had just over four weeks to practice, says Victoria.
After she finished her first-year exams, she threw herself straight into the new curriculum for more complex math subjects in high school.
In seventh grade, Victoria received a Tempel Geometrie book for Christmas, and after making her way into the penultimate class, she wanted new challenges.
– Then I thought it would be great to try to take the exam in 1T, you say.
In one year, the 13-year-old took three high school math subjects and ended up with the highest scores on all tests.
– What grades did you get in the exams?
– I got six on the three, Victoria says proudly.
– What do you think about getting sixth grade?
– I think it’s fun. It’s just fun reading and working with math. The funny thing is, find out more.
100 times harder
Mathematics teacher and supervisor Skage Hansen runs the Advanced Mathematics Program for enthusiastic pupils in Years 6 and 7 in Bærum Municipality.
After three hours in what Hansen refers to as his “speed classes,” he quickly decides that Victoria should be in the more advanced class.
An experienced teacher says that he hardly saw likes.
– I noticed that Victoria managed all the challenges at once. Sometimes you couldn’t explain it. She just saw him. In 20 years, says Hansen, I’ve only met one person who has managed these tasks so quickly.
The tasks that Victoria and the other students in Speed’s classes have to work on are taken from Hansen’s own book, Tempelgeometri.
According to Hansen, the tasks in the book are 100 times more difficult than the usual curriculum in the third year of high school.
– The whole point is to find ways to solve engineering problems, based on the starting point of students in grades 6 and 7, he says.
In seven months, Victoria had solved all the tasks up to the last, tenth chapter. Stop there.
– The last semester is very demanding, even for people with a PhD in mathematics. I don’t know anyone who has made it to Victoria in just seven months, says an impressed Hansen.
– A little bit like Jacob Ingebrigtsen
When did you realize you were good at math?
– I always thought I was good at math, but it was only when I joined the speed chart that I really thought was fun and interesting, says Victoria.
Hansen compares the 13-year-old to one of Norway’s best athletes in terms of talent and determination.
She looks a bit like Jacob Engebrigtsen. He said when he was 13 that he wanted to win Olympic gold. This is a bit like Victoria too.
The teacher is full of praise for the girl who will start the ninth grade after the summer. He supports her because she can do whatever she wants.
– How far do you think Victoria can go?
– She can get as far as she wants. You talk about wanting to do well in the Abel competition and maybe get a PhD at a very young age, he says, glancing at Victoria.
Although Victoria has two years left in high school, this does not prevent her from dreaming. Some plans have already been made.
– I will start a course at the University of Oslo, if you take it. It’s a calculus course for high school students, she says excitedly.
Victoria aims to take a lot of maths courses in university before she is an adult. I already got a book on calculus.
– The plan is to read and enjoy calculus over the summer vacation.
– Would you say that you are a genius in mathematics?
No, I don’t feel like a genius. I do a lot of math, so I’d say I’m relatively good, Victoria says modestly.
Find a community
Camilla Lund Sorace describes her daughter, Victoria, as a girl with a huge drive who fixes things herself, helps around the house and takes care of her two younger brothers.
The mother is very happy that Victoria has found her thing. It means an incredible amount for the 13-year-old, she says.
– It changed after I entered the speed system. I have become happier and happier. There is something about being part of a community where you share a similar interest.
And mathematics means a lot to the daughter, she is felt at home with the Lund Søraas family. If a piece of carpet is badly worn, it affects mood.
– But if she succeeds in solving a difficult task, she comes dancing from the room and is very happy. Then the peace of the family is preserved, says Camila.
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