Not being comfortable with Mathematics is a worldwide problem. So, at Walnut we consciously try to increase the students’ comfort level with this subject. The Mental Math classes play a great role here.

Std 1 : 2 classes / week
Std 2 : 3 classes / week
Std 3 – 10 : 1 class / week

When we say Mental Math, we are not talking about calculations – those are important, but those are not the main reason kids find Math hard. Basically, they need to be comfortable with reading a word problem and understanding what they have to do. Calculations come later.

For example, kids of Std 2 see a problem like this “Peter had 66 marbles. His friend gave him 23 more. How many marbles does Peter have now?”. You could ask the kid – so what will you do now? They may say – umm, minus? Then you raise your eyebrow and ask – really, minus? They take a quick detour and say – oh, plus?

This is not a good start. First, they need to be able to understand whether it is + or a – operation and why. Then comes the calculation part. So what we do in this class is expose the students to a lot of word problems and then discuss them WITHOUT solving them. This is done before the lesson is formally taught in the regular Math periods.

When a Std 2 kid sees a word problem like this, this is how they think!

Std 2 Mental Math girl speaking demo

In higher classes, the Mentally processing Math ability requires them to draw diagrams about a lighthouse and an approaching ship for trigonometry or setting up the age relationships between father and son for linear equations in two variables etc. They do not have to solve the question at all. So, it’s not a stressful class for the students. Once this class is done, the actual formal Math class is not dealing with unfamiliar concepts. So those get easier for them as well. Virtuous cycle, here we come!