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Some Basic Abacus Techniques

The abacus has been around since historic times, with the discovery of the Aztec abacus, found among the remains of a Mayan civilization, it can safely be dated back to the 10th century. The more recent use was when the Romans invented the hand abacus, which brought about a revolution and soon abacus training, began in earnest around the world. Different countries had their own versions of the abacus and devised unique and interesting techniques of using them, though the basic principle remained the same. Some of the other forms of the abacus are the Chinese suan pan, Japanese soroban, Native American abacus, known as nepohualtzintzin and the Russian schoty.

 
Abacus training for children is becoming a popular way to improve mental math skills, around the world. Abacus coaching requires a certain amount of knowledge of basic abacus techniques, which might differ while using different variations of the abacus. Abacus training helps your kid pick up basic mathematical skills as well as some advanced mathematics skills as well, this includes addition, subtraction, division, multiplication and even square roots and cube roots to name a few. The basic principle involves assigning values to the beads and then moving them up or down, or left or right depending on the kind of abacus being used.
 
Generally in an abacus, each groove or bar, fits only 9 beads. This is because every time you reach the number 10, you have to move to the next bar or groove, where now you denote the tens place digit with the next bar and the first bar is the ones place digit. So if we were denoting 14 on the abacus, then the first bar on the abacus, denoting ones place would have 4 beads and the next bar denoting tens place would have one bead. The abacus is generally read from left to right, which means the abacus would now read, 14. Understanding the concepts of regrouping and carrying are essential to further move ahead in the place values. This kind of dedicated and complete training is something that can expected at a Math – n – Abacus, abacus coaching center.
 
Abacus coaching requires individual attention to each young child and providing such an environment, Math – n – Abacus, abacus coaching centers ensure that each child is given attention and that the child learns to like the process instead of hating it due to miscalculations. Addition is done using the tens – complement method, which once again requires clear instructions, followed by guiding the child to do problems him/her self. The process of addition basically requires the child to move the beads and arrange it in the left to right manner that it is written down in. The beads need to be placed correctly and the child needs to note the carry forward correctly, which then leads to the result of the addition immediately.
 
Subtraction on the other hand requires the child to first arrange the beads for the minuend and then start the process of subtracting from the upper and/or lower decks, always from the left. The resulting bead number is the result to the subtraction. Subtraction requires that the child should be clear about adding up and taking off. These points are emphasized on during abacus coaching as they lay the foundation for sound mathematical skills. The Lee Abacus, another variation of the original abacus is used popularly for multiplication and division as well as much higher mathematics. The Lee Abacus method is quite simple and allows children to grasp these concepts better and more easily.
 
The Japanese technique of using the abacus is known as the soroban technique. In a soroban, one bead is placed above the beam, and has a value of 5, and four beads and below the beam, and they have a value of 1 each. Every third rod is marked with a dot, to denote the unit number. The designation of the unit number is up to the operator. The beads are moved up and down using the thumb and the index fingers respectively and the number of beads touching the beam signifies the value. The soroban technique employs the rule, which requires you to work from left to right.
 
The Chinese version, known as suan pan on the other hand, though quite similar in structure, uses a slightly different approach. The beads in the lower deck are known as earth beads, or water beads and have a value of 1 each, and the beads on the upper deck are called heaven beads and have a value of 5 each. Following the place value system based on Arabic numeral system, which is a standard in almost all forms of the abacus in use today, the rightmost column represents the ones place and then it moves gradually forward, increasing by 1 unit as you move to the left. The suan pan is very closely interlinked to the number system of the Chinese, known as “huama”.
 
At any Math – n – Abacus, abacus coaching center, which is primarily providing abacus training in India, the children are provided with all the basic skills that are required to master the technique of using an abacus. The fact that the child uses his/her hand while using an abacus makes them relate faster to the concept, as the brain gets the message faster. This also helps develop the child’s right as well as left side of the brain. Providing all round development is not something to be taken lightly. Experienced professionals are required to handle abacus training, as the future of the child depends on it. Abacus education in India is fast gaining popularity, due to the immensely significant role it plays in the mental development of the child. Providing for this increased need for abacus education, Math – n – Abacus brings forth its abacus coaching centers, which are guaranteed to provide the right kind of guidance for your child, and are equipped with fully trained and experienced staff.
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