Ganit Manthan is a year-long program run during the academic year mainly for students from 8 to 16 year olds.
The focus of the program is to achieve long-term goals of Mathematics education i.e., to develop higher order thinking skills, enable critical thinking, enhance problem-solving skills, develop good reasoning skills and inquiry skills. The program focus on designing experiments, questioning, thinking like a Mathematician, exploration in Mathematics, elementary research, developing critical thinking, and much more. All this is done through healthy peer-to-peer discussions and debates, unexplored Math-lab activities, reading research papers (or parts from a paper), and sometimes through interactions with experts. The program also enable students to explore into unknown worlds of Mathematics, do research and write research articles, provide opportunities to present their papers in National and International Conferences, meet experts in the field of education, Mathematics and allied areas.
The program is conducted on a weekly basis at different locations. Duration is two to three hours per week which give enough time for the students to explore and go into the depth of the topic being discussed. The sessions are both inquiry-based and inquiry-oriented, i.e., it would be based on inquiry and it will also lead to inquiry/research/exploration, etc.
Topics covered are Algebra (to develop algebraic thinking), Geometry (to develop imagination and creativity, reasoning and justification through proofs), Number Theory (to encourage exploration in numbers, study of properties in numbers, to come up with new conjectures, etc.), Proofs (different types of proofs and reasoning used in Math and Science, and how Scientific and Mathematics proofs differ), Thinking like a Mathematician (Theory Construction in Mathematics which enables the student to build different worlds of Mathematics like Euclidean world), Games (to develop winning strategies, to introduce them to think how normally people think in an economy, introduction to game theory, etc.), Geometric Constructions (for exploration in shapes), Activities (a wide range of activities with square grids, geometrical shapes, etc.), Puzzles (to develop logical thinking, lateral thinking, reasoning, non-routine ways of solving problems), History of Mathematics (to help students understand how Mathematics evolved in different cultures before we got them in the form that we see today), Discrete Mathematics (for high school students and above), and more.
Not all the above topics are applicable for every age group, but more or less most of the topics are brought down (or up) to the level of the students in the class. Unlike most sessions where the objective of teaching a topic is to learn the topic, in Ganit Manthan, the objective of the sessions is always be to use a topic to achieve the aim of making them good thinkers, bring out their creativity, improve critical thinking, and so on.