Jump to content


New abacus! Help please!


Recommended Posts

I just bought a "school abacus" the kind with 10 rows of 10 beads horizontaly. Now how do I use it to help my kiddos with math?!?! Thanks so much for any and all help!


There are two ways that Right Start uses the abacus. The first side is used horizontally and each bead equals 1. It only works for up to 100.


Once place value is in place you turn it vertically and have two rows that are ones place, two rows that are tens, two rows that are hundreds, ect... so that you can do larger numbers and trading based on place value.



Link to comment
Share on other sites



You can teach addition => 4 + 7 => move 4 beads on one row to one side, then move 6 on the same row and 1 on the next row. The answer will be 10 on the first row and 1 on the second, which is 11.


Subtraction => 17 - 5 => move 10 on the first row and 7 on the second, then move back 5 from the second row. The answer will be 10 on the first row and 2 on the second, which is 12.


You can do this for larger numbers (sum upto 100).


Multiplication => Table of 2 => 2 on the first row is one 2s = 2

2 on the first two rows is two 2s = 4. and so on upto ten 2s.


Division => 32 / 8 => How many 8s can you make out of 32 beads?


Then, as Heather explained, when place value upto 100 is mastered, you can designate one row as ones (each bead is a 1), the second row as tens (each bead is a 10), the third as hundreds, and the fourth as thousands. Do the same for the next 4 rows. Then you can teach addition/subtraction upto 9999. Google for more info on the Montessori small bead frame or the RightStart abacus.


Do write back if you need more help.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


  • Create New...