BHUBANESWAR: With 1,500 children, all grappling with 200 questions, trying hard to solve all of them and as fast as they could, mentally calculating, it was a sight worth viewing at the sixth All Odisha UCMAS and Mental Arithmetic Competition.
The students had come from 60 Universal Concept Mental Arithmetic System (UCMAS) from across the state to participate in the competition. All the students were being trained under the two-year UCMAS programme. Children between the age group of four and 12 years can be trained as their brains are in the formative stage.
The students had been divided into three groups - one was of age group four to six years, another six to nine and the last nine to 12 years. They were all given a question paper with 200 complex mathematical questions which they had to solve within eight minutes. The ones with abacus, had a five minutes deadline.
According to Bhubaneswar Genius Academy director Sanjukta Shadangi, these children did not possess any special skills, they were just trained to use their brain better. She explained how the children, as young as four years old, were introduced to calculations using abacus. “Visualisation is a major component used for calculations done through abacus,” said Shadangi. After six months into the course, the abacus is taken away from the students and they have to calculate mentally.
The children will be awarded a champions trophy and runners-up prize. There will be one champions of champion, who will be the best performer of the 1,500 students.