What is an
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What is an Abacus?
An abacus is a tool used for doing calculations, it made up of a numbers of rods with beads.
More information about the principles of using an abacus will be found in the Introduction of Mental Arithmetic chapter.
At a certain level after starting abacus training, students start learning of the beads position on abacus and solve problems without using an abacus, simply by visualizing the beads in their head.
It has been proven in various pieces of scientific research that the math skills of pupils learning with an abacus improved more quickly than those of the same age not studying mental arithmetic.
Using an abacus involves coordinating vision, hearing and finger motion, leading to an increase in the number of synaptic connections formed in the student’s brain (a synapse is the structure that connects two neurons or a neuron and an excitatory receptor). It has been shown that the brains of abacus students receive visual, auditory and sensory signals very quickly, meaning they think more rapidly and can deal with a large number of problems more easily.
Everyone knows what arithmetic is. But what about mental arithmetic?
Mental arithmetic not only helps you to do addition and subtraction, but to do them quicker than a calculator,
It also developing the brain within the same time. But let’s think it only one step at a time.
Mental arithmetic genuinely teaches children to do calculations quicker than a calculator. In the learning process, children use a special tool, an abacus, to begin with, and later form an image of the abacus in their mind, allowing them to solve sums of any quickly and without mistakes.
However, the most important thing that happens during the mental arithmetic training is the balanced development of children’s intellectual and creative abilities, helping them to reach their full intellectual and creative potential.
In Last 12 year we got about abacus has received numerous testimonials and heard many surprising personal stories (some of which you can read in the Testimonials chapter) which offer concrete proof of the method’s effectiveness. In addition, the positive effect of mental arithmetic has been proven in several international studies.
The abacus has an ancient history, abacus invented dating back to long before the tools used for calculations today were invented.
It is thought that first abacus counting frame is appeared in sand or dust, on which figures were drawn lines which could be wiped out with your fingers when required.
Over time, our ancestor has been tried to count the number by keeping pieces of element.
This type of abacus was widespread until the 17th century, when the third form of abacus appeared. Instead of lines with loose pieces that could be freely moved around, the table had pieces that could be moved up and down along grooves.
All three types of abacus-an abacus with a layer of sand, an abacus with lines and an abacus with grooves – were in use at some point in Roman times. The fourth type of abacus, featuring beads threaded onto rods on a frame, evolved from the third type. This type of abacus is still used in China and Japan and other parts of the world.
Parents nowadays tend to worry about preparing their child for school, whether they are sending a child to school for the first time or they have many years of experience.
Nevertheless, no matter how well-prepared children are, eventually the moment comes when they stop enjoying themselves, and their enthusiasm for learning new things completely evaporates.
What is the reason behind this? At primary school, children are forced to complete monotonous and boring WORK, with most of the focus placed on accuracy and speed. As a result, children’s creative abilities are suppressed, and topics, which is important for all children, is neglected.
Russian theatre director Konstantin Stanislavski once noted that “…there is something in the education system that suppresses children’s capacity for creativity, fantasy, and unusual ways of expressing themselves”.
Many teachers note that children who have gone through primary school maths cannot solve non-standard or original problems – something causes them to lose their intellectual flexibility. When faced with taxing problems, they don’t even bother to think, and they are scared by unfamiliar tasks. By their fifth year at school, children’s motivation to study is fading. They become used to only studying for tests. The learning process itself at school becomes a chore, and often parents hire private tutors, so the boring work are repeated at home as a homework. As a result, the child becomes apathetic.
To avoid this situation, children need to be encouraged to develop an interest in learning.
Children who use the mental abacus have shown remarkable progress. This progress has even extended beyond mathematics. Abacus students have a growing sense of confidence and self-worth. They also excel in many other subjects, inside and outside of the classroom. Published research has been done on the effects of the mental abacus since the 1970s. These studies look at cognitive development, social behaviours, memory retention, and reversal of cognitive impairment.
A recent research publication, entitled Abacus in the Brain, followed the case of a mental abacus expert who suffered a stroke and had rebuilt her mental abacus and advanced calculations over a 2-year span. The study commented on how “abacus users not only manipulate the tool skilfully in its physical form, but also gain the ability to mentally calculate extraordinary large numbers, often more than 10 digits at the expert level, with unusual speed and accuracy.”
As mentioned above, the science behind the abacus points to success beyond mathematics. Here are some important benefits of the abacus: Higher sense of spatial reasoning – The abacus is a multi-sensory tool. Because it can behave in many different, yet controlled ways, it shows children how to equate physical object with abstract thinking. This builds both their imagination and spatial reasoning. Numbers they once thought were too big to imagine become understandable and they realize that some concepts they might have thought were not a big deal turn out to be a bit larger than they thought. Highly developed long-term memory – When children learn the abacus, they learn how to solve a problem. This technique is applied to problems outside of arithmetic. They will know the steps to solve geometry problems, algebra problem, and word problems. They will also learn new languages easier as they remember vocab and grammar better. Easily accessed short-term memory – The short-term memory in most students is filled with how to solve many different problems. However, with the abacus, these solutions do not have to be memorized because they are already known. This frees space in short-term memory for other essentials like schedules and important to-dos. Critical thinking skills – Because the abacus is taught through system knowledge, it teaches children how to critically and analytically think about a problem. For more about how the abacus teaches critical thinking click here.
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.
Through the training on the Flash Cards (one of the mental training tools and during solving 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.
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 mental parameters.
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 photographic memory.
In APPL one of the real challenges is time. Kids are gradually trained to give extremely accurate result in shorter times. This continuous challenge will teach kids how to optimize the use of time while staying accurate.
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.
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 APPL to have a very strong foundation for academic achievement and excellence