Why Your 8th Standard Student Should Attempt The Maths Olympiad
The International Mathematical Olympiad is an internationally-recognized exam that is conducted for pre-university students to encourage and recognize their mathematical talent. It is a world-renowned aptitude test and was first held in Romania in the late 1950s. This exam is conducted all across the world every year, and the students who win are awarded generous cash prizes.
These exams are conducted for students from 1st standard in India and can get quite competitive, all the way to 12th standard students. However, it is considered to be a tremendous achievement to rank highly on these internationally known exams. Here are some of the main reasons to convince you to let your child participate in the Maths Olympiad.
What exactly is the Math Olympiad?
The International Mathematics Olympiad (IMO) is widely considered to be one of the most prestigious mathematical competitions for students under the age of 20 in the world.
It is hosted by the Science Olympiad Foundation, a non-profit, educational organization that is based in Delhi, India. The Olympiad exams are held in formats that vary from country to country, but in India, the exam is split into school, regional, national, and international levels, and is based on the most common Indian school math curricula such as CBSE and ICSE.
What is the exam syllabus?
Not only do the lower levels of this exam tests students on their basic knowledge of math, something that is often a part of their syllabus, but the further you go in the competition, the more the math deviates from what is normally taught in schools and crosses over into the more theoretical and practical application mathematics. Here, a student’s originality and ingenuity with solving deceptively simple mathematical problems is the main focus and does not involve a lot of basic mathematical concepts. However, this is usually mostly seen at the international level.
For class 8 students, the syllabus is quite age-appropriate and overlaps quite a bit with the math syllabus at school. The primary level papers contain 60% of the 8th standard syllabus and 40% of the previous grades syllabus, i.e. 7th. Some of the basic concepts that do appear on the syllabus include:
- Square roots and cube roots
- Data handling
- Mensuration and visualizations of basic 3D shapes
- Algebra etc.
What is the exam format?
Students are provided with a question booklet and given an answer sheet separately. It is MCQ-based, so the student will need to indicate their chosen option on the answer sheet for every question. There are 50 questions that need to be answered within an hour.
The exam is split into 3 sections:
- Subjective and Mathematical Reasoning (35 questions): This section tests the students’ conceptual understanding of the mathematical concepts that they have likely already covered in class. You can refer to Class 8 IMO Question Paper 2011 or other past papers to get more details about the relevant and specific concepts that will be tested.
- Logical Reasoning (10 questions): This section has questions on finding patterns, understanding analogies, and using simple formulae to solve them.
- Higher Order Thinking Skills (HOTS)(5 questions): This is likely to be the most challenging part of the exam, as solving them requires critical thinking and the application of multiple mathematical concepts. The marks scored in this section are instrumental to determining the highest rankers in the IMO.
Why should your child attempt this exam?
- The prices and scholarship opportunities are incredibly generous and one-of-a-kind:In the past academic year, the SOF admittedly spent nearly 18 crores on prizes, recognitions, and scholarships.
This money will not just make it easier for your child to study abroad and pursue their interests, but is also a prize worth the immense pressure parents can put on children.If you rank highly at the International level, each child can win up to Rs. 50,000 along with a gold medal and an internationally-recognized certificate. Zonal level winners win around Rs. 1000, a medal, and a certificate as well.
- They can become even more proficient in this subject:
These exams are unique as they appeal to a child’s creative and hands-on skills. So not only is your child learning something new, but they are also learning how to apply math more practically and the significance of the subject in the real world, which is an incredibly important skill if they want to be successful. Since this exam is personalized to each grade level, students can attempt the Olympiad exams every year, as long as they are eligible to do so (they cannot attempt this exam once they turn 20). Preparing for this exam will mean that they are not only studying to do well in the IMO but also mastering the concepts of their math syllabus at school, allowing them to top their class as well.
- The prestige of this organization and exam series will be a huge asset in their future:
Not only will significant and successful accomplishments be a remarkable addition to their resumes, but this prestige will follow them for a long time. Either with university applications, job and internship prospects, or even other mathematical competitions, doing well in the IMO will open the door to a host of incredibly enriching opportunities that your child would not have been able to access any other way.
While competing at the higher levels of this competition, students will get the opportunity to interact with similarly-accomplished students from all across the world. Not just the students, but many professionals in the field will also be there. Networking and getting to know them could give rise to some incredible experiences that your child will likely cherish for a long time.
This is a prestigious and world-renowned exam that will undoubtedly push your child to achieve their best and expose them to once-in-a-lifetime opportunities. Especially if your child is already strong in maths, this may prove to be the perfect stage for them to showcase their talents, problem-solving skills, and mathematical abilities.
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