Over 3,000 students to battle it out at mental math contest in Dubai

The students from 45 different schools will participate in the exam, being held in three batches.
The students from 45 different schools will participate in the exam, being held in three batches.

Dubai - The competition is being organised by Ignited Mind Lab - a company that conducts mathematical competitions.



By Saman Haziq

Published: Fri 11 May 2018, 11:00 PM

Last updated: Sat 12 May 2018, 12:14 PM

About 3,200 students will participate in the grand finale of a mental math competition at Amity University on Saturday.
The qualifying round of the competition, organised by an Indian firm to develop interest in one of the most dreaded subjects for many students, saw the participation of over 30,000 children from grade 1 to grade 7 in March-April.
From the 45 different schools that participated in the qualifying round, about 3,200 students qualified for the grand finale inter school round. The competition is being organised by Ignited Mind Lab - a company that conducts mathematical competitions. Ignited mind is ably supported by Ideal Management Consultants, a Dubai based consulting firm for whom this is an important CSR initiative.
Schools from all curriculum boards including UK, IGCSE, American, CBSE and ICSE participated with equal zeal and enthusiasm. The exam is being held in three batches on Saturday, from 10am to 4pm.
Neha Jain, who led the event coordination, said that young children should be exposed to such large competitions as it plays important role in enhancing their confidence and competitive spirit. "Mental maths enhances their self-esteem and makes them confident to face future competitions. To excel in any field of life, you need to have an agile quick-thinking mind, good memory, focus and confidence. And these are the skills sharpened by such competitions. Children also develop a sense of discipline since they are supposed to practise on their own for some few minutes," she added.
Talking about the paper pattern, Dilip Jain, the catalyst who led the event last year, said: "There are two sections of 50 marks each. Section A focuses on arithmetic and number crunching skills. Section B is focused on higher order thinking skills (HOTS). Also section B has negative marks which means that for every wrong answer, student loses half mark.
"With technological developments like artificial intelligence, mathematical skills will be in higher demand than ever," Dilip Jain said.
A math coordinator at a Dubai school, Meliza Benavidez said: "Mental math will not only serve students well in school, but it'll also help them outside the classroom as well. Students who master the technique of mental math will find that the strategy helps them in many situations. Studies have shown that students are more interested in learning techniques that they can apply to real-world situations."
One of the participants of Grade 4, David Fekry from The Sheffield Private School, said: "Mental math to me is doing calculations in my head. It makes my brain quick and sharp. It helps me in my daily life - especially when I go shopping as I can easily calculate the amount of change I need to get back."
Suhail Mohammed Al Zarooni, an Emirati Guinness World Record holder and chairman of Al Zarooni Foundation, who presided over the award ceremony of the mental math competition in 2017 said: "I believe that children are our future and skilled manpower will shape destiny of our nation. Initiatives like mental math competition is very important as it helps children develop their interest in maths and removes phobia."
saman@khaleejtimes.com  


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