New Delhi,(IANS) Arithmetic, abacus, calculations and cheerful kids enjoying every moment of it. This unlikely scene played out in the capital Sunday at the fifth Northern Region Abacus and Mental Arithmetic competition.
Organised by Sociable Intellectual Progressive Academy (SIP), the annual event helps children develop memory, concentration, and arithmetic skills by using internationally proven tools like abacus, brain gym and speed writing.
"The event was excellent and around 1,000 kids participated. We also have a national and international championship. The idea behind these is to motivate the kids," Dinesh Victor, managing director, SIP Academy told IANS.
Participating in such a big event at an early age also gives the children the confidence to prepare for much bigger challenges, Victor added.
The programme has 11 levels spread across three courses - foundation, advanced and grand master, meant for kids between the ages of five and 12.
"We charge a registration fee of Rs.875 and a monthly fee of Rs.650 to Rs.750, depending upon the rent we are paying for the centre. The duration for each level is 3 months, with one two-hour session held every weekend," Victor said.
Ankit Gupta, a ten-year-old from Faridabad who reached level seven, said: "Earlier I was very weak in mathematics tables and could not concentrate well, but since I've joined SIP, I've improved a lot in all my subjects."
"I've reached the grand master level A and I've improved a lot in mathematics. After joining SIP, I've started scoring above 90," said a proud Jatin Sardana from Noida.
Aman Bhardwaj, a nine-year-old from Amritsar, also was delighted with the results. "I got my half-yearly result yesterday and I've scored A1s in all my subjects."
The parents too were pleased with their children's performances.
"There has been a noticeable improvement in my son's results, especially maths. It definitely makes me feel proud and happy," said Meena Sardana, mother of Jatin.
The academy has been conducting programmes in India since 2002 and has trained 100,000 children in 450 centres across 18 states.
The course has earned three Limca National Book of Records certificates, and is available in over 1500 centres worldwide.