Oundle School pupil pens poetic book about mathematics

Oundle School pupil, Rebecca Siddall, 15, has published her first book entitled The Poetry of Proof, containing fifty mathematical proofs explained in poetic form to help newcomers to the world of mathematical proofs.
Oundle School pupil, Rebecca Siddall, 15, has published her first book entitled The Poetry of Proof, containing fifty mathematical proofs explained in poetic form to help newcomers to the world of mathematical proofs.

A 15-year-old Oundle School pupil has published her first book combining abstract mathematics with poetry.

The Poetry of Proof has been written by Rebecca Siddall and it contains 50 mathematical proofs which are explained in poetry form.

Rebecca said: “If mathematical proofs are given a certain light-hearted and poetic mood and tone, it makes them both enjoyable and easier to absorb. “My aim is to provide a soft landing for beginners who might be daunted by the plunge into understanding proofs.”

Mathematical proofs are arguments which convince someone else that something is true. The Poetry of Proof is designed to be a book for beginners in either poetry or mathematical proofs.

Last year was an extraordinary year for Rebecca. As well as writing her book she completed an online astrobiology course and attended an Astrobiology Conference at Edinburgh University, where she presented a paper on microbes.

For two years running, Rebecca has won the School’s Science Essay Writing competition, was a prize winner in the Oundle Festival of Literature’s writing competition and received enthusiastic feedback from a Cambridge don for her essay on a Babylonian mathematical tablet.

Rebecca has also achieved successive Gold Awards in the British Society of Biology Challenge, and a recent Distinction in the UKMT National Maths Olympiad.

Juliette Coles, Rebecca’s tutor, said: “Rebecca is an exceptional individual whose curiosity defines her approach at all times. She makes the most of every opportunity offered to her and relishes all forms of intellectual challenge whilst being delightful company in the process!”

For more information about the Poetry of Proof, visit www.telchinepress.com.