Abacus & Vedic Math: The wonder tools

Abacus & Vedic Math: The wonder tools Cover Image

Is your child ready for Abacus? How will it benefit him/her when it comes to understanding core Mathematical concepts? Vijayalakshmi explains all this and more.

The first question which I face from young mothers is about the Abacus program.

  • My child is already good in Maths. Should I still put him in Abacus class?
  • My child is struggling with numbers. Will Abacus help her?
  • My child went for 2 levels of Abacus classes and considers it boring. Should I continue or stop?
  • What is the right age to put my child in the Abacus classes?
  • Will he be confused with the method used in the school?

There are many misconceptions about the program. I would like to throw some light on the whole issue mainly for parents.

Brain workout

A child’s mind is primed for learning, but it needs early experiences to wire the neural circuits of the brain that facilitate learning, hence training the brain becomes vital. There are specific activities that may stimulate the right brain.

Abacus is an age old technique and it has been confirmed as one of the best exercises for the development of brain. This technique has been accepted the world over and is actively being used in over 30 countries around the globe. When the mind gets constant exercise the mental power of the child gets a boost. Just like the equipment at the gym is a medium for body building, similarly for brain development Abacus is a proven medium.

All players in the field of Abacus do not give a clear picture as what happens when the child learns the arithmetic techniques using the tool. Abacus is a small frame with beads in it. The child first learns to interpret numbers in the form of beads. We teach the various arithmetic operations with numbers using the beads.

Focus and concentration

The child’s focus is restricted to a small area when he is doing the arithmetic operations. His concentration power gets a boost. After the first level the child starts visualising the beads in its mind. The child starts to do calculations in the mind which is difficult for any child at that tender age, when he uses fingers to count. The memory power is said to increase by this exercise. The constant use of the tool with their fingers is a very good fine motor skill development for the child and it kindles the creativity in them.

If concentration, memory power and creativity improve, the child’s overall performance improves. The Abacus training should be given at an appropriate age, in a phased out manner which stimulates the brain and bring out the hidden potential in it. Abacus training well equips a child to learn anything at ease. A child becomes very good in numbers which is an add on advantage of this program. Working with numbers, train the brain to see connections and builds the neural pathways that make the brain stronger for all other things.

A ten minute practice daily at home will bring the desired result in the child. The child loses interest if the teacher is not good enough to train the child in a proper manner.

The child uses the sense of sight, hearing and touching to stimulate the brain. This is based on the theory of kinesthetics.

When the child learns any subject for that matter, it forms as a visual image in the brain and the learning becomes easier and faster. The child does not get confused with the conventional method taught at school. On the contrary, the child cross checks his answer mentally using Abacus.
The result of the training is visible in improved reading, comprehension, music, maths scores, project work and memory.

Vedic maths

Mathematics consists of deep ideas concerning numbers, computation, shapes, symmetry, movement and has several branches such as, number theory, group theory, algebraic geometry etc.

Vedic Maths refers to a set of sixteen sutras. These sutras or concepts can be used to help speed calculations in certain special situations. It may be compared with developing the ability to run fast on a special race track. It could indeed be useful in solving problems in Mathematics at a high speed mentally but has restrictions. The student should remember the sutra to crack the problem. It comes by practicing the methods regularly.

If attaining skill in speed arithmetic is the aim then Vedic Maths is the key. The best part of Vedic Mathematics according to me is the joyfulness, the students feel when they use it, the ‘aha’ experiences, and thrills understanding.

Choose the right institute

As discussed earlier there is a strong association between brain development and Mathematics. Vedic Maths also promotes mental calculations. Practicing the concepts regularly will make the child smarter.

Choose the right institute. Talk to the trainer and find out her methodology. Abacus training and brain gym techniques go hand in hand to achieve best results. So if the institute offers both it is a perfect combination.

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