# Veteran Right Start users...help and guidance please...

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Background: My ds5 just finished Level A. It was too easy for him. He loves math and seems to have a good understanding of it. He sat in, his own choosing, during his big brother's math lessons (Level B) and picked up the concepts quickly. In fact, he would often give the answers to problems like 35+17, mentally, before his brother had a chance.

Now: We are working our way, quickly, through Level B.

Question: My understanding of RS is for them to use the abacus in order to visualize and grasp concepts, but once they understand, then the abacus is not needed. Am I correct in this understanding?

Next question: He understands and is able to work complicated problems, mentally, without the abacus. Should I still use it? We are coming up on the lessons teaching them to use side two. From what I can tell, he already "gets it". Should I skip the abacus? I don't have a problem presenting it to him, but I guess I am wondering what is the point unless he will need to know how for the next levels.

Clear as mud? Thanks for your help! :001_smile:

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I have not used RS except the first few lessons of Level A as dd4 was not ready so can't comment on your specifically. However, in any math program, if my child is passed the need for manipulatives and is grasping the groupings of 5, etc., I don't force them to use them.

Edited by HiddenJewel
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[Question: My understanding of RS is for them to use the abacus in order to visualize and grasp concepts, but once they understand, then the abacus is not needed. Am I correct in this understanding? Yes

Next question: He understands and is able to work complicated problems, mentally, without the abacus. Should I still use it? We are coming up on the lessons teaching them to use side two. From what I can tell, he already "gets it". Should I skip the abacus? I don't have a problem presenting it to him, but I guess I am wondering what is the point unless he will need to know how for the next levels. My suggestion would be to run through one problem as a demo and see if he can replicate it on another problem to show he understands. From what you've shared, this should be easy for him. I think that it would reassure you that he does understand the concept of the problem before tackling them on his own.

To answer your question about future levels - I don't think that they really work those specific problems with the abacus again - I think the important thing is that they understand how place value works on the abacus and how to trade. If they get those concepts, I would say you're good for future books. FWIW, we did use all 5 levels.

Hope this helps a little!

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I would go through RS as is. Show him side 2 of the abacus. Have him do a problem illustrating on the abacus, if he gets move....put the pedal to the medal and move on lol. :auto: That's what I did. We were doing 2-3 lessons sometimes but everyone once in a while, some little nugget came up and I was glad I went through it albeit quickly. Side 2 will basically illustrate that when adding large numbers on paper, it's easier to add right to left. Until now, doing math mentally, you've been adding from left to right. The next few lessons using side 2 have a lot of problems. IF he can do a couple of them quickly, easily and correct, move on. It even states that DC doesn't need to do all the problems if he gets right away, trading and adding from right to left.

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My younger son is like this. I show him the concept on the abacus, teach it to him, but then don't force him to do it. If he can already do the work, I do the abacus demonstration, have him work the problems, and we speed on.

Sandra's right. The importantthing is that they understand how place value works, how to trade, and how numbers can be taken apart and recombined. Some kids will need the abacus for a long time; others will quickly have no need of it.

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Thanks for your insight! I will continue to show him the concept on the abacus but if he understands it, then he need to use it for his work. :001_smile:

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Thanks for your insight! I will continue to show him the concept on the abacus but if he understands it, then he need to use it for his work. :001_smile:

You meant he doesn't need to use it for his work, right?

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