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A schoolgirl from East Renfrewshire has won a top prize in a national maths competition.

Zoya Mohammed from Thornliebank took home a level 3 prize of the National Abacus Maths Challenge.

Zoya was 1 of 10 winners with another five coming from the Greater Glasgow area.

Out of the hundreds of students who took part, Aanya Pasupuleti from Lenzie has won the level 9 prize in the Abacus Maths competition. The 9 year-old’s parents are thrilled their daughter has been recognised for her mental arithmetic skills.

Photo: Zoya Mohammed, Winner of Level 3 prize standing with her mother
Photo Credit: The British Youth International College (BYITC)

Her mother, Vinodini said: “We are really pleased that Aanya has been rewarded for her hard work at Supermaths through this challenge.

“She used to struggle with simple arithmetic, but since starting Abacus Maths training, we have noticed such a big difference. Aanya is more focused and confident when calculating difficult sums now – and best of all, she has fun while doing it.

“Taking part in the national challenge alongside her Supermaths classmates and being awarded one of the top prizes has made Aanya even more excited to continue learning.”

Other winners in the Greater Glasgow aera were Dhanya Bhardwaj from Garthamlock, Abhiram Doraiswamy from Milngavie, Janice D’Souza who lives in Bishopbriggs and Ojas Maniyar from Laurieston.

First launched in February 2022, the most recent National Maths Challenge in September marked the second iteration of the innovative competition organised exclusively for BYITC Supermaths students across the UK.

The first-of-its-kind challenge is based on the school’s pioneering Abacus Maths instruction. The top performers across each of ten levels of Supermaths training are awarded certificates and prizes for their impressive arithmetic skills.

The National Maths Challenge is aimed at children aged 4-14. Students take part online, completing a series of fun quizzes, mental arithmetic problems, and numerical reasoning questions to test the skills they have honed through Abacus Maths tuition.

BYITC’s Founder Dr Rashmi Mantri, said: “The National Abacus Maths Challenge was created to identify, assess and celebrate students who show extraordinary Abacus Maths skills.

“We know that working on arithmetic problems alone can be monotonous, so we have introduced a competitive element so that students can improve their analytical skills in a more dynamic way.

“Our aim is to find the next generation of mathematics prodigies, to kindle their competitive spirit, and to nurture their true potential. As such, the BYITC Abacus Maths Challenge is a real game changer.”

A core component of the BYITC’s approach to Maths teaching, Abacus Maths training is introduced to students through the Supermaths programme.

Kids are taught to calculate sums by visualising an Abacus board and use their fingers to manipulate imaginary beads. This not only allows them to do rapid mental arithmetic, but also stimulates cognitive development, improves memory and focus, and develops problem-solving skills.

The BYITC is now the UK’s largest provider of Abacus Maths classes. Split into a junior and senior track, Supermaths is taught through a mix of weekly teacher-led classes, online learning tutorials and activities. Pupils can also make use of the world’s first digital Abacus maths learning App, developed by the BYITC for its students.

Rashmi added: “By taking part in the National Maths Challenge, we hope our Supermaths students will further develop their interest in maths and enthusiasm for number crunching. The challenge not only improves their arithmetic skills, speed and accuracy, but also boosts their confidence.”

After a successful start, the school now plans to organise an International Abacus Maths Olympiad and the same students will now be moving to compete in this global competition.

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