Cracking GCSE math is no problem for this 13-year-old

Kelly Clarke /Dubai Filed on July 1, 2017 | Last updated on July 8, 2017 at 02.19 pm
Cracking GCSE math is no problem for this 13-year-old
Rehman Asif Oomer

Rehman Asif Oomer has sat some of the toughest exams in British curriculum, years ahead of schedule - it's really not a big deal for him

Rehman Asif Oomer can definitely be described as a bit of a numbers whiz. The Dubai student scored an impressive 'A*' in his GCSE mathematics exam.

A year later, he secured a topper-worthy A** in a further mathematics paper, and come August, he's expecting good news again when his AS Level exam results come in.

But did we mention Rehman is only 13 years old? Yes, this Kings' School Al Barsha student could give even the best maths whiz out there a run for their money.

Here is a student who has sat some of the toughest exams in British curriculum, years ahead of schedule. But for him, it's really not a big deal. Last month, Rehman joined tens of 17- and 18-year-old students in his school to sit the AS modules of A Level mathematics exam - and his teachers are predicting "excellent grades" across each exam.

Taking papers in Core 1, Core 2 and Statistics 1 modules, Rehman told Khaleej Times he actually loathes homework.

"I don't really like doing homework or studying, in fact. Unless I have an exam coming up, I tend to avoid it," he said.

Clearly, he's a natural when it comes to numbers, but he said he has put in the hard work too. "I'd say it's natural talent and hard work; a bit of both. If I didn't work hard, it wouldn't work."Speaking about the fact he is the only pupil in his year to sit these exams early, Rehman said it's a journey that has "progressed naturally".

"When I was 11 my mum suggested I sit my GCSE maths exam early as she could tell I had a flair for it. Then in Year 7, aged 12, I went for the further maths paper. At first, we were all a little dubious because I was only doing year 8 work, and this was year 10 stuff, but eventually I felt confident."

Nurturing a talent

From the age of about eight, Rehman started taking math tuition with his tutor Matthew, who he said has been "instrumental" in helping him excel in these exams. "We got a tutor (in primary school) because at that time I was only being exposed to work up to Year 6 level. I was excelling, so we went with a tutor so I could stretch myself."

Ultimately, his thirst for maths saw him move schools too. That's because the school he was at didn't challenge him enough, so he made the transition to Kings' School Al Barsha.

"Since moving there I've progressed a lot," he said. Sitting those AS exams last month, Rehamn said the first one (Core 1) was the easiest. "That first exam focused more on transitioning from GCSE level work to AS level work. The second was based more on Algebra, which is actually my favourite area of maths, and the third was a little tougher as it focused on A level work."

But in terms of nerves before the exams, he said he tries not to stress himself out. Apparently, that has worked a treat so far.

"I try to avoid the older kids when sitting these exams because I get embarrassed being asked why I'm taking it. "

With the next bout of results due out in August, it's now a case of sitting and waiting to see how he has faired. In terms of what his plans are for the future, Rehman said he's still figuring that out.

"I honestly have no idea what I want to do when I grow up. Maybe I'll pursue something in IT or mathematics; or I could invent something, something to do with medicine or 3D printing. But honestly, I'm just spit-balling ideas here." Rightly so. after all, he's only 13.


Kelly Clarke

Originally from the UK, Kelly Clarke joined Khaleej Times in November 2012. She has a keen interest in humanitarian issues and took over as the dedicated Education Reporter in August 2016. In her spare time she loves to travel off the beaten track, and often write about her quirky experiences of pastures new. Kelly received her BA Honours in Journalism from Middlesex University, UK in 2008. Before joining Khaleej Times she worked as a Supervising Editor for three Healthcare titles in London. @KellyAnn_Clarke

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