Blog / Education / What Is the True Abacus Maths Meaning?
What Is the True Abacus Maths Meaning?

15 Aug,2020

What Is the True Abacus Maths Meaning?

What Is the True Abacus Maths Meaning?
This article have outlined the importance of abacus maths and its meaning.

Find out what modifications were done to the soroban to became what it is today!

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

1. How to Discover the Truth About Abacus Maths Meaning?

How to Discover the Truth About Abacus Maths Meaning?

Learning about the abacus has been a way of life for people living in Japan.

Even back in the day, countless people use this calculating device for many different purposes.

In this article, we will talk about how the soroban is used and how it has transformed into the wonderful tool it is today.


1-1.Where Can a New Student Understand Abacus Maths Meaning?

Where Can a New Student Understand Abacus Maths Meaning?
To begin talking about this article, we must first know a few fun facts about this small yet mighty tool. It was first used for calculations for thousands of years and it does basic arithmetic operations such as addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division. Even though it is not a tool that is electronic, it allows people to solve calculations as fast as modern-day calculators you have on your phones! Soroban, the Japanese abacus, is the most widely accepted and used abacus in the modern world. This tool can be even used by visually impaired people and there is a special version made just for them which is also known as the Cranmer.
The soroban works by having each column(rod) having two decks divided by a bar. The upper deck can have one or two beads that represent the value five and the lower deck have 4 beads that represent the value in ones. The values of the beads differ from their location. For example, the beads in the first rod from the right side are multiplied by 1 which gives the lower beads values as 1. With upper beads as 5, the rod next to it is the 2nd rod is multiplied by 10 which give the lower bead values as 10 and upper beads as 50 and the 3rd rod from right is multiplied by 100 which give the lower bead value as 100 and upper as 500 this is applied to the other rods in a respective manner. Each column increases in value by ten. Fun fact: upper deck beads are also known as heaven beads and lower deck beads are called earth beads. Upper decks beads should be dragged to the top and lower deck beads should be dragged to the bottom before starting the calculation or counting of numbers this position is known as neutral position and also represent the value 0. The calculation is done by moving the beads up and down respectively. Not only that, but the thumb must also be used to manage lower decks beads and index finger must be used to manage upper deck beads.


1-2.What Is the History of Abacus Maths Meaning?

What Is the History of Abacus Maths Meaning?
The soroban is widely considered as one of the first counting devices invented by humans; the history of abacus dates back to 753 B.C.E. - 476 C.E. to ancient Rome. Counting has been one of the important things in a human’s life since the early stages. There is also evidence that ancient people relied on the abacus to do math operations such as addition, multiplication, subtraction, and division. The word abacus was taken from the Greek word called “ABAX” which is translated into a tablet or flat surface. According to encyclopedia.com, ancient people used a flat table known as counting boards to do their calculations before the invention of the abacus device we see today. Back then, counting boards were big and unmovable and were hard to manage. With the invention of the abacus, we were able to solve these issues as the devices today are small, can be carried by hand and it is easy to manage these aspects of the abacus. This encouraged the ancient people to use the abacus as the main calculating device and the usage of abacus starts to spread from Greece, Rome to China, and then to Japan and Russia. Abacus was made from a material that can get decomposed over time. Due to that reason, archaeologists had a hard time finding an ancient abacus device. However, they were able to find the oldest surviving counting board on an island called Salamis in 1899. It was stated that it has been used by Babylonians around the time of 300 B.C.E.
There are a few variations of the soroban. The soroban discovered by Romans was a bit different in look compared to the other ones around the world because it was constructed on a stone tablet instead of using string or rows with a frame. There were also different variations of roman abacus such as the dust abacus, line abacus, and grooved abacus. The suanpan is also known as the Chinese soroban. It was pretty different in construction, unlike the other abacus it has two beads in the upper deck. It is stated that due to the complex structure, the suanpan was not used much. Soroban is the Japanese version of the suanpan, which is pretty much similar to the Chinese variation. However, it has its own structure, unlike the Chinese suanpan. There is only 1 bead in the upper deck and there are only 4 beads in the lower deck. Suanpan is still used in Japanese schools and still used around the world as a common mathematic tool. The Shcoty is the Russian version of soroban. It was first used in the 1600s and this is a completely different version from any other calculating tool. There are no decks and the beads move horizontally from left to right and this device is still being used by the Russians today. There is even Lee’s Improved Abacus where the Chinese and the Japanese soroban are combined into one. This is widely accepted as the most efficient abacus to do complex calculations.


1-3. A Few Benefits of Learning Abacus and the Maths Meaning Behind It

A Few Benefits of Learning Abacus and the Maths Meaning Behind It
It is helpful to learn how to use the soroban as it is known to increase concentration abilities. When using a soroban, we concentrate on the beads and their movements. Not only that, but students are also reportedly seen to have an increase in memory capacity too. Even though the soroban is known as a calculating device, this device helps you to do the calculation using only your brains. This is because you will be visualizing the movement and formation of beads in your heads instead of relying on a calculator.
When you learn it online, classes are visual and also verbal. Especially with Online Soroban, there are animated features created for students to look and learn every step. Guided by animation and films, learn with beautiful aesthetics and clear teaching methods. Modern-day soroban teachers are rare to find and expensive. Most soroban classes are taught individually or in small batches which increases the tuition fees. However, when done online, education is easily found anywhere!


Not only is the soroban a calculating device, but it is also an exercising device for your brain. Learning with technology is made so much easier for those that want to upgrade themselves.



All About Abacus maths - What You Need To Know About The Counting Frame
All About Abacus maths - What You Need To Know About The Counting Frame
How does abacus math encourage your child to learn more? Let us share about the tips and tricks on how abacus maths will benefit your child.


Abacus maths
Abacus maths
Abacus can be produced and the effects of the abacus

Same category
Let's learning ISHIDO-SHIKI
Contact Us
Contact Us