Mathematics encapsulates the mayhem of nature through abstract equations and quirky ideas, owing to which, it aggrandizes the acumen of common folks. Perfection in math is an elixir that is obtained with rigorous practice, dedicated effort and clear understanding of the subject matter. An Olympiad is an early exposure for a student interested in the complexities of math. In India, the International Maths Olympiad is conducted by SOF (Science Olympiad Foundation). The event garners huge participation from students enrolled in classes 3-12. However, the increasing number of participants ensures cut-throat competition for the prize.
To ace the competition, one must step into the game as early as possible. As such, there are no prerequisites for taking the Olympiad and the entry fee is minimal. Previous question papers such as the Class 6 IMO Question Paper 2014 available on https://www.vedantu.com/olympiad/ieo-english-olympiad-previous-year-question-paper-class-6-2014 give a brief idea about the questions asked.
A Brief Summary of The Steps
- When starting the journey, a student must be familiar with every nook and cranny of the mathematics textbook that is utilised by his school teacher.
- Moving forward, an educated private tutor could enhance and exploit a student’s potential in an organised manner. A student should consider talking to his teacher so that he can overcome his weaknesses and feel confident about his abilities.
- When a student is through with his fundamentals, he must practice from the books structured for Olympiads. When choosing the books, it is important to talk to a senior who has secured a rank in an Olympiad in his previous years to gain insight about the proper books to be utilised. One must also consult their mentor for appropriate guidance.
- After covering all these aspects, the next step is attempting mock tests. The previous year papers are readily available on the internet and can be accessed with a single click. Mock tests are integral in the preparation strategy because they estimate a person’s standing among his peers. It takes a few mock tests before one achieves their desired performance output. Even if one messes up some of their mock tests, remember that a failed test is not a failed person and try maintaining mental sanity.
- Socialize with peers. As quoted correctly by someone, “A healthy rival enables you to grow much more significantly than a lecture by your mentor.” Discussion of doubts among peers eases out pressure and enables a student to acquire skills from his social circle. Social awareness is mandatory for success otherwise solitude may hamper progress and end up making the student feel lonely and devastated.
- Maintaining a proper work-life balance is the need of the hour. A lot of comrades tend to ignore their health for attaining excellence in academics but this method is disastrous in the long run. All work and no play, could take a toll on mental health and might result in exhaustion of will power. At this tender age, it is unwise to handle pressure beyond the yield point.
The Importance of Internet
As much as a person likes to blame the internet for all the mishaps in our surroundings, one cannot deny the fact that it has a plethora of resources for every average joe. The financially vulnerable could access resources from the internet which allows them to have a better understanding of competition in this arena. The fact that the internet is home to more than 3 million articles makes it considerably important to be highlighted in the preparation strategy of common folk.
Students who are unable to afford fees for a private tutor or fail to arrange for the necessary books may deem the internet to be their saviour. With the introduction of education sites, the resources are available at a finger’s touch. The internet may also be used for recreation purposes during the tenure of preparation. Web series, movies and songs ease pressure and help achieve maximum output in academics. Apart from that, the student may also benefit from the countless online forums and discussion platforms, facebook, discord and youtube being some of the recommended platforms. The internet is a messiah for students who want to keep upgrading their skills.
Here’s an excerpt from a student who was a gold medalist in imo-“when I was a student in standard six, I had a keen interest in math which motivated me to prepare for the Olympiad in the first place. I was an average student, just like most of the readers and therefore, had to practice a lot. A student may ask for the source of my encouragement and dedication but I feel that I did nothing out of the box. My interest and curiosity for this subject persuaded me to keep striving harder and aim for the bullseye. I hung around with my friends and practiced with them. I never felt that preparing for the Olympiad was a burden for me because I had amazing mentors and an even meticulous friend circle. They gave me the strength to push harder and at the end, I did end up winning the gold medal that year, owing to the hard work of my friends, parents and teachers. What I wanted to convey through this little story of mine was that although in my case the result was favourable, it does not genuinely matter whatever the result is, if the person has put in sufficient effort and time, learning the subject matter.”
Preparation for the Olympiad may seem uneasy at this age but as stressed in this article a number of times, it usually is a piece of cake if a person is able to behold the beauty of the subject. It requires a tremendous amount of dedication to continue practicing for the Olympiad despite repeated failures. The journey is not a bed of red roses but the reward is worth it and even if the result is unfavourable, it is inconsequential. Failure is not the end of the road but another start to a beautiful future.