Abacus is the wonder tool being used in several countries for training children to learn fundamentals of Mathematics like addition, subtraction, multiplication and division. The most important question to be answered is, how Abacus works and what are the other advantages of Abacus other than learning Math? Let us discuss this in the ensuing write-up.
Mental Math Abilities
If you have ever attended an Abacus Mathematics competition you would be able to relate to what I am trying to say. You will see kids calculating numerous digit sums mentally without using any instrument neither Abacus nor a calculator or a notebook. This comes as a real surprise to the common people. And most importantly the answer comes the moment the question is completed. Believe me, they calculate faster than a calculator.
How does Abacus work and help kids do Mental Math?
The process is simple but very scientific. There is a science behind Abacus. Let me explain it step by step.
1. The child listens to the digits being dictated with great concentration so that they do not miss it.
2. They visualize the Abacus instrument and move the beads on this imaginary Abacus to get the value of the digit.
3. They constantly keep changing the position of the beads as per the digit and the arithmetic operator to be used.
4. They equate the value of the last position of the beads at the end of the question and recall it and speak out the answer.
Math, in general, is a difficult subject for many students, but the Abacus students are continuously trained through this process in every Abacus Class they attend throughout the two and half year course of Abacus. This makes the Abacus students experts in doing Mental Math with confidence and does away with any kind of Math fear they might be having.
Enhances Memory and recall
The kids undergoing regular Abacus Training go through a process where they develop a sharp and photographic memory. Since they are not only expected to visualize and move the beads on the imaginary Abacus but are also trained to remember the position of the beads after every change owing to the shifting of the beads. The period of the training i.e 24 months has an important role to play, this becomes a habit and the students not only exhibit excellent memory but also their recall ability is also great.
Makes Kids highly focused
Usually, when we say a child is highly focused and has a great concentration, we actually want to say the child listens carefully to what is being said, executes meticulously what is expected and rarely makes mistakes and is sincere. Well, all these qualities get imbibed in a child undergoing Abacus training:
a. They become focused as they have to listen very carefully to the numbers as they get only one chance.
b. They execute meticulously (move the beads absolutely correctly) so that their calculations do not go wrong.
c. They are trained to answer every question accurately at a great speed.
Ability to Visualize to perfection
Visualization being the key to learning Abacus is one of the very strong Abacus Advantages that every Abacus Trainee develops.
This helps the kids to perform well in the other subjects too, especially in subjects involving graphic representations in the form of diagrams (biology), Geography, drawing etc.
Since they are able to visualize several beads on the virtual mental Abacus, they develop excellent number sense and are able to remember numbers with several digits.
Whole Brain development
Although I should have put this as the first benefit, I preferred to jot it as the concluding one, because this is the ultimate outcome of Teaching Math to the kids with Abacus.
When Abacus training is initiated the child is made to move the beads with both hands. Since it is a proven fact that right-handed people have a more active left brain (over 90% of the world population is left-brain dominated), this activity of using both hands activates both the left and right hemispheres of the brain thus triggering Whole Brain Development.
As discussed above you must have by now understood that the advantage of the Abacus is not limited to only Mental Math or numbers. It has several other benefits like enhanced memory & recall, ability to visualize to perfection, improved focus and concentration, developing logical thinking ability etc. This of course reflects in the increased level of confidence and grades of an Abacus Trained child.
With as many benefits as discussed above, if your child is yet not enrolled at an Abacus class, you should make a decision and enroll without any further delay. But what is important is you should choose the best Abacus Classes in your vicinity or an online program.