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Spotlight on a geometry prodigy

Staff Reporter
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R. Kannan, a student of the Pattathil Government Lower Primary School, near Attingal, beside the thermocol structure he made within three hours.
R. Kannan, a student of the Pattathil Government Lower Primary School, near Attingal, beside the thermocol structure he made within three hours.

: The Science, Maths, Social Science, Work Experience Mela organised by the State Department of Education sees scores of students testing their skill in a range of competitions from IT-related projects to quiz.

A Class 5 student from the Pattathil Government Lower Primary School may not have won in his category, but to the staff and students here, he is quite the maths genius. Emerging triumphant in the Upper Primary category of the Mela’s Kaniyapuram sub-district category is a quiet Class 5 student, R. Kannan, whose display of enthusiasm is only a relieved smile. His masterpiece, a thermocol replica of the Eiffel Tower, dominates the other projects in the still-model category at the Thundathil High School where the Mela was held on November 7. “He finished it well ahead of the others,” said B. Beena, a teacher of the school, adding that he competed with students of Class 6 and 7. She said during the competition this Friday, there were six other Eiffel Tower replicas.

Kannan’s brilliance in mathematics would have gone unnoticed had the Principal of the Pattathil School, Leila Begum, not come across the boy wandering near his home close to 16{+t}{+h}Mile, a few kilometres before the town of Attingal. He was seven then. “That is why we do the rounds before the start of a new academic year. A lot of children hail from underprivileged families and there are cases where there is no one to admit the children to school and they end up helping around the house or doing odd jobs to support the family,” said Ms. Begum.

When she and a group of teachers from the school found the boy, he said he was interested in joining the school. Once he did, his talent in geometry and the science subjects shone and the fact that he was enrolled late posed no hurdles for the boy. Constant support from his teachers saw his skills being honed.

The number of practice figures in the store-room of the school building is proof that the budding architect is not exposed purely to an academic-oriented schooling. “I only have to offer him tips now and then,” said Ms. Beena. The thermocol structure towered close to 6.3 feet. “He can complete it in less than three hours now,” she said.

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