Two Guinness World Records — for the most 4x4 Klotski puzzles solved in one minute (team of 25) and the fastest time to solve a 4x4 Klotski puzzle — were set by a group of 11-year-old pupils from Longhua No 6 Primary School in Chongqing's Nanchuan District on Saturday.
"Hua Rong Dao", or Klotski, is a traditional Chinese block-moving puzzle.
In the challenge for the most puzzles in one minute, 25 fifth-grade students solved 131 number sliding puzzles within a minute.
The other record— the fastest time — was set by team member Ran Yuhan in 5.706 seconds. The former record was 7.08 seconds, according to Wu Xiaohong, the Guinness certification officer.
"The faster I play, the more I like it," said Ran, adding that she had never won a competition before but ranked third in the class the first time she played Klotski in first grade.
"A shy girl, Ran incredibly showed her talent in Klotski. She has explosiveness and a unique pace in tackling the puzzles," said math teacher Li Yan, who introduced number sliding Klotski puzzles to the class five years ago.
Li said Klotski is part of the school's after-class activities between 3:30 and 5:40 pm, when some children's relatives are unable to pick them up from school.
The school's headmaster, Li Chengzhong, said other games, including chess, Rubik's cube and Luban lock are also provided.
To prepare for the challenge, which was initiated by the school in October, 55 fifth-grade students practiced Klotski puzzles regularly for an hour daily, supplemented by practice at home in recent weeks. Li said 25 students were selected for the challenge, but she is planning for the rest to try as well in the near future.
Luo Cheng, deputy director of the local education commission, said the challenge provides a glimpse of the achievement under the policy of easing the burden of excessive homework and off-campus tutoring for students undergoing compulsory education.
"I'll stick on the game, which is challenging, but extremely fun," Rand said. "I hope to break more records in the future."
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