S.Chingim: Challenging myself is more important than winning

  • By chagy5
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  • 2024-06-05
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S.Chingim: Challenging myself is more important than winning

Children who practice intellectual sports are increasing year by year. We talked to S.Chingim, a fourth-grade student at Yazguur School. He was selected as an outstanding child of 2023 and was a two-time national champion in the “Flash Anzan” category of the quick-thinking competition. He also set a Guinness World Records by making 276 clicks (23 steps) in a Simon game while listening to music blindfolded. In addition to memorization and quick thinking, he also achieved many successes in Rubik’s cube. 


You have been practicing intellectual sports since you were three years old. You started with sport stacking. What are the rules and how to compete in that type?


I first practiced sport stacking, and then dice. There are many types of cubes, such as triangles, squares, two-sided, mirrored, five-sided, six-sided, and seven-sided. For me, I decided to specialize in one of them. When I was three years old, I took part in a sport stacking competition named after my teacher B.Bolorchimeg and won a gold medal. It was my first achievement. People know sport stacking as a cup game. Cups are stacked for a certain period of time and then collected. As far as I know, the world record is two seconds.


How many years have you been studying at the Mongolian Intellectual Academy?


At the age of three, I started practicing intellectual sports when I met my teacher B.Bolorchimeg in Byatskhan Sondor kindergarten. About six years have passed since then.


There are many types of intellectual sports. Which types have you tried so far?


I am participating in memory and dice competitions for now. There are 10 basic and intermediate types of memory. These include column words, speed ​​cards, historical events, binary counting, number marathon, abstract pictures, sound digits, and faces. For me, I first learned four types: column words, binary counting, speed cards, and abstract pictures. But now I am learning the eight types.


Why did you choose intellectual sports, especially quick thinking?


I have been interested in intellectual sports since I was in kindergarten. My parents never forced me to study it. I repeat it every day just because I like it. Therefore, I think that I have achieved success and improved in a short period of time. Every time I succeed, I am encouraged and try harder.


How many digits can you think of?


I can add and subtract 10-digit numbers and divide eight-digit numbers. Multiplying and dividing multi-digit numbers is easy if you already memorize times tables.


Which competition did you participate in most recently?


I took part in the ranking improvement competition organized by the Mongolian Intellectual Academy. The ranking is determined before participating in the national championship. First 40 children qualify for the national championship. I won the first place.


Which competition required the most patience and effort?


I was very nervous and scared when the Guinness record was set. I competed in the “Simon” memory game. At that time, I accomplished the task of clicking and playing while only listening to the music. Thus, I passed 23 steps without loss and set a Guinness record by remembering 276 clicks. The rules of the competition are similar to the well-known game “Atoms and Molecules”. If you miss one time, it doesn’t matter how many stages you go to, it’s back to the beginning. Therefore, it means that you have no right to lose it, you have to remember it all. Also, teacher Kh.Khatanbaatar set a Guinness record by remembering 25 steps or 325 clicks.


How long did you train?


We do research very well before participating in the competition. I trained with my teacher Kh.Khatanbaatar for three months. The main thing is to repeat it regularly every day. That way, you can progress very quickly. I repeat the numbers for an hour on weekdays. It has become a habit.


What were the difficult things?


There were no difficult things because I like it myself. Not tired at all. Also, I didn’t go to this competition in person, instead I submitted a video.


How did you feel when the Guinness record was set? How did the family and teachers react?


Four students of Kh.Khatanbaatar teacher have previously set Guinness records. I am the fifth one and it felt very good. I was in the building of the National Academy of Governance at that time. As soon as I opened my eyes, I won. Everyone there congratulated me and applauded. There were about 20 people, but when they clapped for me, it sounded very strong and loud, like 50 or 60 people. My family also congratulated me and said they were proud of me. After that, they sent me a certificate, a medal, and a shirt from London, the United Kingdom. 


How many competitions have you participated so far?


I have participated in more than 100 competitions and won 38 medals and 10 trophies.


Your family must be very proud of you?


My parents encourage me a lot. “You can do it”, they often say. But they don’t say that you must participate well in the competition and win. But they always say, “Just do your best, and let’s see where it will go”. My family says that just competing and challenging yourself is a great achievement rather than being the best. 


You are a two-time national champion in the “Flash Anzan” category of quick thinking. What are the rules for this? 


In the “Flash Anzan”, materials are distributed from the background. A number will appear on the screen. People solve it or think of it then write the answer on the paper. There are 16 one-digit numbers and 28 two-digit numbers. A single digit number starts at approximately 0.7 second and ends at 0.2 second. During this time, the number flashes. It means that the answer is obtained by adding them together. But the two-digit number flashes for up to one second. In 2022 and 2023, I became the national champion in the “Flash Anzan” category. It is organized by the Mongolian Intellectual Academy every year in August.


In the competition held in Antalya, Turkey last year, you won first place in the memorization category and second place in the category regardless of age. Was this your first international competition?


Yes. I competed in an international competition for the first time. I took first place in the memory category of the competition and received a trophy. At the final stage, I met my friend B.Garid, who also studies at the Mongolian Intellectual Academy. My friend is into memory and dicing. I won first place in the eight years old age group. Also, I competed in the unlimited age group and got second place by just one point short. But our team took first place.


Which competition was the most memorable?


Setting the Guinness Record was the most memorable one. I am always proud of myself. I can’t forget the feeling when I found out that I had set a Guinness Record.


What do you do in your free time?


I usually do my homework, sometimes go outside and play football. Moreover, Mongolian Intellectual Academy recently introduced a new game. I have been playing that game with my father lately. It is a game that requires luck. If you roll the dice and land a pair, you move forward four times. But if you roll two sixes, you can move forward 24 times. Also, I recently participated in the “Gerege cup” soccer competition in the 10-year age group. Our team took first place and won the trophy. But the trophy belongs to the teacher for now.


So you play football. Which team do you support?


I like “Chelsea” Football Club. My father also plays football. We like to play together and watch football matches. Dad also can play basketball well. I can’t play like my dad, but I know the basics.


What are your next goals and dreams?


The Intellectual Olympics, held once every four years, will be organized in November. My goal is to be in the top three in this competition. My dream is to become a world champion. I dream of becoming the world leader in intellectual sports and making my country famous.


Is it difficult to think quickly and are there times when you get discouraged?


Sometimes when preparing for the competition, it feels difficult and there are times when I get discouraged. But my teacher encourages me. That’s why I don’t give up and I have the strength to try harder.


What advice would you give to your friends who are interested in rolling dice and practicing quick thinking?


The most important thing is to repeat it regularly. Just one hour of repetition means you will improve day by day. If you practice persistently, you can achieve success.