Preschool ScheduleFall 2017, Ages 4-5
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A Gift That Lasts a Lifetime
Image abacus is a method of mental calculation based on the principles of abacus calculation. A virtual image of the abacus is formed in the mind and used to perform calculations at a highly accelerated speed.
No, an abacus is not required. The concept of the abacus is used as described above, so only an image of the abacus is required.
The image abacus system consists of ten levels plus five advanced degree levels. Level 10 is the novice level, and degree 5 is the most advanced. The training takes approximately 4 to 5 years to complete. Normally, dramatic improvement in math capability is evident after the student has achieved the first two levels.
Yes, there is a grading standard. The levels of the image abacus system are themselves indicative of the grade achieved. This is a system that is over 150 years old, inherited from the Japanese and now in use internationally.
The difference between image abacus calculation and conventional methods is profound, but difficult to summarize. Image abacus calculation relies upon the manipulation of an image rather than the arithmetic processes with which we are familiar. Thus it is able to draw upon right-brain resources, resulting in dramatically increased speeds. Details of the process are best understood by attending one of our information sessions
It should not conflict significantly. There are distinct differences in the two methods. If a child is able to start the program prior to or concurrent with being taught conventional methods, there is minimal conflict and the child will easily work within both systems. If a child starts the program later, having already received traditional foundations, there may be a slightly extended learning period (approximately 3 months) for the child to accept and integrate the image abacus method.
Most children start this program between ages 5 to 10. The optimal age to start is 6 or 7, because the brain cells are vigorously learning which connections to keep, and which to discard. As well, between the ages of 4 to 10, the brain is super-active. At about age 10 or so, half the connections will have died off, leaving about 500 trillion that remain fairly constant through most of our life spans. Also, children over the age of 10 may have a steeper learning curve before experiencing the full benefits of our system. In the summer of 2012, we designed and launched a preschoolers' program for children ages 4 to 5 to build a strong foundation in their early years.
Because the training method of image abacus differs so greatly from that of conventional mathematics, a lack of success in conventional math does not predict less success in the program.
On the contrary, some of the most successful students have been those who previously experienced difficulty in conventional math. If a student is dedicated to the program, receives
strong parental support and encouragement, and persists through the initial training period, there will be dramatic improvement.
A student who has already demonstrated advanced ability in mathematics will benefit greatly from learning the image abacus method. Relieved of the mechanics of arithmetic calculation, the student will be able to devote full attention to more advanced concepts both in mathematics and in other subject areas.
To put it simply, this is a challenging program. However, history has shown that very few students withdraw from the program until a basic proficiency, and the associated dramatic improvement in ability, is achieved. This is largely due to the extremely positive reinforcement that a child receives as the program begins to take effect. A positive cycle of achievement and the enhanced self-esteem that comes from accomplishment begins early and sustains the child through the significant effort that is required.