What is UCMAS ?
UCMAS is a unique scientifically-proven mental development program
designed for children and young people to develop their talent mental
power at an age when brain development is reaching its peak ? children
between the ages of 4 and 12. The program was invented to capitalize on
the first 12 years of children?s lives, when 75% of brain development
The Science Of The Brain
Scientists have been able to understand and measure brain activity
with the use of new technologies like EEG (Electroencephalography), fMRI
(functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging) and PET (Positron Emission
The discoveries that have resulted from recent research are leading to
breakthroughs in our understanding of brain development and how to enhance it.
Our brain is divided into two hemispheres, the left hemisphere
and the right hemisphere. In general, the left and right
hemispheres of our brain process information in different ways,
while we have a natural tendency towards one way of thinking,
the two sides of our brain work together in our everyday lives.
However, about 90% of children use primarily the left brain! The
focus of the left brain is verbal, processing information in an
analytical and sequential way, looking first at the pieces then
putting them together to get the whole. Naturally the left brain
is responsible for dealing with present and past, logic,
sequencing, computation, reasoning, linear mathematics,
languages, and analytical abilities.
The right side of the brain focuses on the visual, and
processes information in an intuitive and simultaneous way,
looking first at the whole picture then the details. Naturally
it deals with present and future, imagination, visualization,
arts, shape, space, intuition, synthesis, integration of
information and creativity.
Experiments show that most children rank highly creative (a
function of the right brain) before entering school. Because our
educational systems place a higher value on left brain skills
such as mathematics, logic and language than it does on arts or
using our imagination, only 10% of these same children will rank
highly creative by age 7. By the time we are adults, high
creativity remains in only 2% of the population.
There is no limit to the potentialities of the human brain. Not
only does the function of the human brain need cultivating from
childhood but, it also needs to be constantly challenged and
used. In order to explore and develop the potentialities of the
human brain fully, many physiologists and brain scientists have
been studying ways to further develop the function of the right
brain, the seat of intelligence, contributing in a large measure
to increased learning ability, concentration, perceptual
capabilities and imagination skills.
UCMAS is the result of such research; UCMAS is an
internationally well-known and powerful whole brain development
program created to help children develop their mental skills
using mental arithmetic as a tool and an indicator for
What Is Mental Arithmetic?
Mental Arithmetic is a form of calculation that is solely done by the
human mind without the use of pencil and paper, calculator or any other
gadget or electronic device.
Why this Age Range?
According to scientific studies and research, the greatest
growth of human brain occurs before the age of 12, with much of
that development occurring in the first few years of life.
Children in that age retain significant ?plasticity? (meaning
adaptability) in their brain, which allows growth and
interconnection of brain cells. This neuroplasticity can be
shaped through visual-motor integration and auditory-motor
For that reason, many experts recommend introducing children at
a young age to a new language, to playing a musical instrument
or to other mental development disciplines, as these activities
stimulate the brain. It is also easier to acquire these skills
at that tender age. As children grow older, thoughts will become
more complicated and rational, and will mainly think with their
left brains. Regular training of the brain using UCMAS Program
will help promote brain activity in general especially in the
The degree of mental development achieved by a child during this
age range has a great influence over his/ her future.
The lessons are structured term / level-wise i.e. each term
consisting of a 3-month period. The child has to attend one
class for duration of 2-hours once a week. At the end of each
term, a test will be administered and based on its scores the
child qualifies for the next term. In all, the course is spread
in 10 terms covering 30 months. Annual grading examinations are
conducted to assess speed and accuracy levels in children. This
helps them to compete with confidence. Once a year, a National
Competition is organized for all UC MAS- Qatar children and
another International Competition for all UCMAS children from
all over the globe, this competition brings the entire UCMAS
Time and place of the course will be set flexibly according to
the center in coordination with the parents.
How Do We Mentally-Train Kids?
The first part of the training is transforming kids into professional
users of the abacus-image below-
The abacus is an ancient tool developed in China some 3000
years ago; it is used to teach children calculation. Both hands
are used to manipulate the beads initially, ensuring stimulation
of both the left and right sides of the brain. The combination
of touch, movement and numerical concept is the initial focus.
Learners start with tangible, concrete concepts ? such as
working with beads, and then will be taught techniques to
perform all four mathematical operations (addition, subtraction,
multiplication and division) in addition to square and cubic
roots using the abacus in a very fast and accurate way exactly
as we use modern calculators. Once mastered, they proceed to
abstract conceptual learning ? such as mental arithmetic.
The second part of the training goes hand in hand with the
first part where children receive a mental training to develop
their imagination, visualization, memory, observation, listening
and concentration skills.
Part of the training involves gradually taking the abacus away
to stimulate children?s imagination, and then they will be
capable of visualizing an abacus where calculations are done
mentally with just the movement of the fingers on what is so
called a ?virtual abacus?. Children solving problems using UCMAS
mental arithmetic techniques will start dealing with numbers as
images since every single number forms a different image with
the abacus beads. Using the abacus images in problem solving
will shift the processing of math problems from the left to the
right side of the brain. UCMAS mental development program thus
initiates the use of the right brain.
The Abacus is the tool we use to teach children to
- The base-ten number system
- Number concepts and numeric relationships
- Place values
- Carrying and borrowing
- Combinations and complements of numbers
Combining mental and motor movements
When children use both hands to manipulate the beads, there is
quick communication between the hands and the brain that
stimulates both the right and left hemispheres of the brain.
The Abacus/Mental Arithmetic reckoning process combines
integrated thinking and motoring functions from both sides of
the brain, so the left hemisphere (logical side) stirs the
virtual abacus (image) on the right hemisphere (abstract side).
What are the Benefits?
Many people often assume that learning mental arithmetic is merely a
method to improve the speed and accuracy of calculations, for
example, adding 10-digit numbers within a few seconds is, by itself,
an amazing accomplishment for most young children. However, there is
much more to this because when the children are learning UCMAS
Mental Arithmetic, they are actually also undergoing the process of
developing other aspects of the mind. When the children have
acquired an astonishing calculation speed, it is actually only the
end result of having developed some of their mental abilities such
as: concentration, observation, visualization, imagination,
listening and memory.
Recent studies have shown that the abacus method of mental calculation is
extremely effective in the development of the right brain. At first, this idea
was only a hypothesis, but the recent development of high-tech machinery has
helped provide tangible research data. According to the research, the learning
and thinking process is enhanced when both sides of the brain participate in a
UCMAS aims to develop human intellect- through improved mind
concentration and imagination- and to revolutionize the field of
UCMAS main benefits:
- Improves Concentration: Kids are trained to be involved in
different processes happening at the same time. They gradually
learn how to be focused on the task in hand and ignore different
kinds of distraction.
- Improves Observation & Listening: Through the training on
the Flash Cards (one of the mental training tools) and during
solving mental math problems, kids take only a glance at the
card or problem to start the numbers? processing. With time,
this significantly enhances their observation abilities.
The same goes for listening since kids are trained to hear
numbers only once during problem solving because numbers are not
repeated. With the continuous use of active listening, kids will
develop significantly-improved listening skills.
- Improves Imagination & Visualization: Kids are challenged to
start forming a virtual abacus early in the training and soon
will start using this imaginary or virtual abacus in solving
problems. This continuous use of imagination and visualization
techniques significantly improves the kid?s skill in these two
- Strengthens Memory: Kids memorize different images during
their numbers training and during solving problems; they tend to
memorize momentarily each image constructed on the virtual
abacus after doing any arithmetic and before giving the final
answer. This continuous use and training of memory significantly
improve this ability especially what is known as the
- Enhances Accuracy & Speed: In UCMAS one of the real
challenges is time. Kids are gradually trained to give extremely
accurate results in shorter and shorter times. This continuous
challenge will teach kids how to optimize the use of time while
- Promotes Creativity: Having developed imagination and
visualization as well as memory, concentration and the other
mental parameters and through the whole process of the right
brain training and activation, kids will find it easier to be
creative and inspired.
- Boosts Self-Confidence: As a result of the continuous
positive feedback received from parents, teachers, peers and the
community as well as the exposure during the program to
different audiences in demonstrations, national and
international competitions, along with the improved mental
abilities- kids will be given an extremely powerful boost to
their self-Image and confidence that will further help them in
their future challenges.
- Lays down a Strong Foundation for Academic Achievement:
Having developed all the above-mentioned parameters, it is
normal for kids at UCMAS to have a very strong foundation for
academic achievement and excellence.
- Develops Astonishing Mental Arithmetic Abilities: This is a
very natural end result for UCMAS, since kids will deal with
numbers in a smooth and entertaining way. Usually kids will be
able to solve arithmetic problems mentally faster than a
calculator! It is worth mentioning here that UCMAS is not a
mathematics drilling program. Children are not drilled with
repetitive ongoing exercises. UCMAS is designed to teach young
learners a skill ? one that will stay with them forever.
We offer two sets of programs:
(KG 1 ? Grand B)
4 - 6 years
- Intro to Abacus, manipulating the beads
- Basic addition, subtraction with Abacus and Mental
- Learning games and activities
|Primary Program (Basic ? Grand B)
7 - 13 years
- Primer on Abacus
- Addition, subtraction, multiplication and division
with Abacus and Mental Math
- Visualization, oral and speed training
||14 weeks |
||2 hours once a week |
|Teacher/ Student Ratio
||1:15 maximum |
||None for normal kids |
- Elementary A
- Elementary B
- Intermediate A
- Intermediate B
- Higher A
- Higher B
- Grand A
- Grand B
- KG 1
- KG 2
- KG 3
- KG 4
- Elementary B
- Intermediate A
- Intermediate B
- Higher A
- Higher B
- Grand A
- Grand B