Math Olympiads test students on their ability and level of knowledge in mathematics. The competitions are conducted class-wise and aim to help students sharpen their existing knowledge. The questions in the Olympiad are based on the topics covered in the particular class and include logical and analytical aspects as well.
If you’re interested in mathematics and want to test your potential through healthy competition, participating in Math Olympiads is the way to go! However, you cannot attempt the exams and expect to score well without adequate preparation.
Are you in Class 8? Then, you’re in luck. In this article, we have discussed the best ways to prepare for a Math Olympiad that can take you one step closer to your goal.
Preparation Steps for Class 8 Math Olympiad
The steps and tips given below can serve as your recipe for success in the Math Olympiad if followed diligently.
Know Your Exam
There are several Math Olympiads conducted by a variety of organizations. You can go for the International Mathematical Olympiad (IMO) that has many stages with increasing difficulty levels to qualify for the final international contest. On the other hand, you can opt for the Math Olympiads held by private organizations. Based on the exam, your amount of preparation will differ.
- For the IMO, your mathematical foundation must be pretty strong, and you must have exceptional skill in the subject. Hence, you need more rigorous preparation.
- If you’re going for a private contest, the level of preparation you need will be lesser than for IMO but thorough, nonetheless. With love for mathematics and proper practice, you’re good to go.
Check the Syllabus
Knowing the syllabus gives you an idea about what will come and how you should go about the preparation.
For the private Math Olympiads, the syllabus is more or less similar to the one prescribed by your school for class 8. Depending on the Olympiad you’ll attempt, the topics may slightly differ.
In the case of the IMO, the syllabus varies from your class syllabus. It is usually spread over to class 12 level. So, you will have newer concepts to learn that are higher than your level.
Look up the Official Website
Visiting the official site for your Olympiad will provide you with accurate information about the exam you’re going to attempt. Here’s where you will find the exam schedule, format, syllabus, how to participate, exam rules, and preparatory material. You can also find previous years’ papers and sample test papers to help you prepare for your exam.
Utilize the Internet
Apart from the official website, you can browse through YouTube videos regarding your exam to gain more information and solve tricky problems. You can also visit other sites that offer valuable tips and practice tests to help you prepare.
Solutions to specific questions that you find difficult will also be available on the internet. Moreover, you can find reference books and other useful material for the class 8 Math Olympiad that is not on the official website.
Practice, Practice, and More Practice
Download the previous years’ test papers of your Olympiad to understand the exam better. This is how you will know the kind of questions you will get, the total number of questions, the marks allotted, and the exam duration. You will also know whether you will have objective or descriptive questions. Then, you can prepare accordingly.
- Download the papers from the last 3 years along with their keys.
- Solve 1 paper to see your abilities and the time it has taken to solve them and solve previous papers like IMO Maths Olympiad Previous Year Question Paper Class 8 2015.
- Verify your answers with the particular key.
- Now that you know how to go about it, solve the other two papers.
This will help you gain a thorough understanding of your performance and what you need to improve on. You can download and solve the other years’ papers as well.
After that, download the sample papers and solve them. The more papers you solve, the better will be your accuracy and speed. You can also check out online test papers and mock tests and solve them for more practice.
Remember: Always solve the test papers within the time you will be given for your actual exam. That is how you will learn time management and answer all questions efficiently. Otherwise, you may take more time for some questions and have less time for others. You don’t want to submit an unfinished paper, do you?
Chalk out a Schedule
Yes, practice can make you perfect but overdoing it without a schedule will be no help. You also need time for other activities in your day.
Plan out your day and make a timetable. Allot a specific time every day for your Olympiad preparation. Make sure you don’t solve more than 1 paper per day. This way, you can practice daily and stay motivated without feeling tired or overwhelmed about your exam.
Take the Help of Your Teachers or Family
Sometimes, you may find some topics difficult to understand on your own. In such cases, don’t hesitate to ask your teachers or family for help. Your mathematics teacher can guide you and help you with challenging topics. Anyone in your family can also assist you if they have knowledge about the subject and have written any Math Olympiad in the past.
You can understand concepts better and feel comfortable if someone you’re familiar with explains them to you.
Nutrition is just as important as practice. You can’t ace your exam if you’re feeling weak.
During your preparation, increase your intake of protein-rich foods and foods that improve your brain health. Eggs, citrus fruits, nuts, leafy greens, oatmeal, and dark chocolate can boost your memory, help you stay focused, and increase your energy levels.
Try to stay away from sugary food. Always stay hydrated. Have a water bottle near you. You can also drink coconut water and fruit juices during this time to stay refreshed.
Taking part in a Math Olympiad can enhance your problem-solving skills and academic performance. But it also needs proper preparation. Check the syllabus for class 8 for your Math Olympiad, visit the website, plan, and practice well.
Also, remember to eat and rest well. You need to be in a good physical and mental condition to attempt the Olympiad.
Make sure you are relaxed the night before your exam. Nervousness is common, but being too anxious and studying too much all night can affect your preparation and mindset for the next day.
Practice like you do daily and go over all the concepts one final time before you’re done for the day. Proper sleep will help you focus and stay alert when you write your exam. Manage your time well and solve the questions as you practise. Good luck!