About How Can the Abacus Help You Concentrate for 1 More Hours: November 2020 Issue
Even when their definitions might be different, the truth is that kids need training to concentrate better for the sake of their academics, either with tools or mental games to boost the brain’s power.
Since it is an activity that needs to be done constantly, a good learning tool to improve a kid's attention and focus range is an abacus, a counting tool used to teach math operations.
I'm the author of this article and I'm a qualified abacus teacher, answering questions from around the world online abacus and various questions from online-soroban.com students.
Table of contents
At the moment of learning, concentration and focus have an important role, since they are what allows us to ignore irrelevant stimulation in order to concentrate on the information that is important at the moment.
It is a skill that needs to be practiced in order to be fully developed, and the sooner kids start with it the better.
It is well known that kids pay attention in different ways than adults or teenagers, since their attention span may not be trained yet.
As parents and teachers start helping their kids to develop their attention, it’s important for them to understand that every kid has an attention span according to their age range, and that isn't realistic to expect for kids to hold their attention like an adult would.
1-1.The Concept of Focus and Concentration for Children
Concentration is the ability to focus their attention on something, while attention is defined as the ability to select and process the information received by the senses, which allows directing and controlling the different mental processes.
Concentration is the beginning of other cognitive functions; people first must pay attention to something before they can process it for meaning and understanding, achieving meaningful learning.
Attention is more than just notice different stimuli occurring around us.
It implies a series of processes, including the filtration of information, the connection between different perceptions, and the way we can connect and understand their meaning.
It is key to know the different types of attention that exist because in various aspects they behave differently and also affect us in a varied way, despite sharing the same cognitive processes.
It may be even possible for the same person to be skilled in controlling one type of attention, and less skilled in managing another.
According to some studies, there are more than ten different types of attention, being the most important: Sustained attention, alternating attention, selective attention, and divided attention.
Sustained attention is the ability to concentrate on one specific task for a continuous amount of time without being distracted.
It can be challenging to maintain this type of attention for a significant amount of time without becoming distracted, mostly for little kids, meaning that the level of sustained attention will often vary depending on the range of age.
Some people may be intensely focused one minute and then their attention may begin to lapse, getting distracted by their surroundings or even their inner thoughts.
However, a key aspect of sustained attention is the ability to re-focus on the task after a distraction arises.
Selective attention is the ability to select from the various factors or stimuli that are present and to concentrate on only the one that you want.
When employing selective attention you are able to avoid distractions from both external (e.g. noise) and internal (e.g. thoughts) influences.
If you are good at selective attention, you are good at ignoring distractions.
You are able to maintain a specified level of performance in the presence of distracting stimuli.
Alternating attention is the ability of mental flexibility that allows you to shift your focus of attention and move between tasks having different cognitive requirements.
It is alternating your attention back and forth between two different tasks that require the use of different areas of your brain.
Divided attention is the ability to process two or more responses or react to two or more different demands simultaneously.
It is often referred to as multitasking. Basically, dividing your attention between two or more tasks.
1-2.Using the Abacus to Help Students Concentrate and Work for Their Future
The abacus constantly exposes kids to exercises that captivate their attention and teach them to maintain concentrate for longer periods of time – they not only need to concentrate on the tool in their hands but be able to solve the different math operations remembering the technique that was taught in order to do it correctly, taking mental note of the numbers.
With the practice of the abacus kids will become able to stay focused for a long time and their cognitive skills (such as reasoning, logic, memory, visual and auditory processing) will develop much more quickly.
They learn to concentrate for a long period of time.
Their brains create the right nerve networks that facilitate an increased level of focus and concentration.
As children use both hands to move the abacus beads to perform arithmetic calculations, there is quick communication between the hands and the brain that stimulates the whole brain. So, concentration improves in a natural way.
With little milestones easily achieved on Online Soroban, your little ones can be motivated with consistent successes and increase their confidence in anything they put their heart into.
1-3. How Can Students Concentrate for a Set Amount of Time?
By using an abacus to teach math, children will have a better focus span since they’ll turn the learning into a meaningful connection, since they’ll associate math – a boring and challenging subject – with a dynamic and interesting tool that promotes learning in a unique and unconventional way, making them become more attracted to learn math.
Abacus is one of the best learning tools available for kids.
It does not only help them with mathematics but gives them the frame of mind that makes them better thinkers.
They are able to solve more complex problems.
Skills like decision-making and analytical mindset are improved making them better individuals overall, not just better students.
Abacus gives children the tools they need to become successful individuals and responsible adults, improving their education and opportunities more and more every day.