An ancient tool, but an advanced method. In the program of mental arithmetic, the abacus, that has been used for centuries, has a central role. Abacus helps to activate both the right and left hemispheres of children. In the following paragraphs we are going to reveal how abacus works and what advantages it has.
The abacus is basically a tool useful for conducting arithmetic calculations. Regarding its origin, there is no common understanding. According to certain sources, it originates from Mesopotamia, but according to others, it comes from Japan. However, it is certain that the principle of its usage was recognized by all ancient cultures. There are a specified number and color of balls on each stick in the frame. These represent the numbers and help you to do the calculations.
How to use the abacus
The abacus has been used by East-Asians to date and it is the tool for mental arithmetic. The abacus helps to balance the functioning of children’s left and right hemispheres. The method urges the brain to think logically. Therefore, children who learn based on this method, will be able to excel at every field of life easily. In our school, we use an abacus different from the rest. In our abacus, the value of the balls on the top of the first row is variable, while the four balls on the bottom mean 4×1. Children pull the two values together with their fingers, then they read the number out loud. This way, they would be able to do unlimited number of calculations, and the balls may even represent trillions of magnitude. This can be conducted without the actual knowledge of numbers. Most importantly, if the teacher shows that the given number is 5, the children should be able to understand and repeat it.
Children learn how to use the abacus at the beginning of the course. During this time, the emphasis is on touch, sight and hearing. In roughly two months, our students will be able to perform the calculations without the physical usage of the abacus. Using their imagination, they will visualize the abacus – or more than one abacuses at once – which will enable them to solve even more complex tasks.
Knowledge they will always have
You might ask us: Why is the abacus needed in the world of computers?
Above all, computers and smartphones may not always be at hand, but our brains are always with us. By participating in the whole program, children acquire what they learn from us for a lifetime, and they will be able to use it in their future. They can calculate equations without paper, pencil and calculator. Moreover, they can do it quicker than machines. Thanks to mental arithmetic, they can not only succeed in the field of mathematics. Besides fast and accurate calculation, extreme concentration, photographic memory and sharp reflexes develop. The method also develops creativity and visualization. With the development of analytical and logical thinking, children solve problems easier in any field of life.