Investigation Report on Tracing-back the Curriculum Reformation
of the Primary Mathematics Featuring on Abacus Mental Arithmetic

……………………………Mr. Fan Youxiang, Inner Mongolia, China ……………………………

  1. The Background, Phase and Purpose

The progressive and developing of basic education on national culture is the foundation and hinge towards the improvement of national accomplishments. However, the progress and development of basic education of domestic minority nationalities is not only the focusing point, but a bottleneck of the whole development. Hence, since 1980, even though it is economically hardship, the whole Government of Inner Mongolia and vast numbers of peasants and herdsmen have been struggling for the progress of schooling conditions. Under this circumstance, the local education is developed from the very beginning named “One no two have” (No education fund but available with students and teachers) to “Pu Jiu” (Popularizing with 9 years of compulsory education) and still, the investment is continuously enlarged. With the pressure of people exhausting what they had for the education and the great expectations attached to the next generation, as an educating operator, we can feel the great responsibility placed on our shoulders. It is just for this reason that driven us continuously investigating a better way of education to improve our education quality and effectiveness, studying on how to boost up the development of basic education in remote frontier lands of minority nationality areas.

Since the Third Plenary Session of the 11th Central Party Committee of China, some advanced theories and education reforming programs have been introduced to Inner Mongolia. Plenty of cadres and teachers have also contributed themselves to hundreds of various kinds of “task programs”, endeavors and hard works. All of these have accelerated the renewal of our education concept, promoted our educational quality and helped to develop more and more students. However, among all of these programs and investigations, some of them failed due to the unpractical and rote of the actual situations, which made us paid for it and suffered from the setback while at the mean time when we achieved our success and experiences. Afterwards, we certainly absorbed the lesson, take positive, prudent and scientific attitude towards the selection and introduction of any new program.

In order to find out the actual required program appropriate to the local area, we have run deeply into every Qi (county or district), years investigating for more than 30,000 students; over 21,000 teachers; more than 2,600 managing personnel in the field of abacus mental arithmetic education and teaching plus up to 9,600 members of student parents. Meanwhile we have consulted and referred to plenty of relevant home and abroad datum. Whenever there is a disputed subject, we stick on the principle that practice is the premier and therefore keep it tracing and investigating continuously. By means of deepening in, we obtain our first-hand data and assisting with the checking of wide range of references and theories studying, we promoted our knowledge up to a higher level. Therefore, we realize and finally come to the conclusion that the basic education system must be reformed. Nevertheless, the renovation of basic education involves with many changeable factors and difficult to be controlled, which is also featured of complex, hardship and long period and easy to intermingle with subjective practice. On the other hand, we have to take into consideration the feasibility of implementation of any reform measures towards the basic education, not merely care for the idea and creativity. According to the manpower and financial conditions at that moment, we decided to carry out the experimental study on the curriculums of primary mathematics. This study was guided by Professor Lin Chongde, the doctorate tutor for undergraduate of Beijing Normal University, which is regarded as the subsidiary task of the key subject hosted by him among many of the “eight-five projects” approved by the National Education committee and part of “nine-five main subjects” instructed by the country. In 2001, it was also listed as a key project of “ten-five task”, which is initiated from the Ministry of Education and headed by China National Institute for Educational Research and cooperated by similar institutes in local area for tackling key problems. In 2004, we have taken part in the research program of “The Education of Abacus Mental Arithmetic Has the Function of Developing Children Potential Intelligence”, which was hosted by the combination of China Abacus Association and China National Institute for Educational Research.

Our research has been divided into three phases. The premier phase is from year 1976 to 1986, which is a self-study period within different schools?Qi and counties; the second phase is from year 1987 to 2000, which the study becomes planned, organized and systematic; the final phase is from year 2001 till now. This phase is headed by China National Institute for Educational Research with supporting from China Abacus Association and cooperated through associated local departments from Beijing?Zhejiang?Shanxi?Heilongjiang?Hunan?Guangxi?etc. It aims to how to develop children’s potential intelligence to boost up their mental and physical evolution. To introduce to the classroom with the education of abacus mental arithmetic, discussing and exploring its functions of illumining intelligence, education and to accelerate the complete development of students for both intelligent and non-intelligent factors becomes the core subject of experimental study for this phase.

  1. Contents and Methods 

(1).    Contents
a.   Incorporating the abacus arithmetic – the excellent cultural inheritance of the Chinese Nation with the researched achievements in present age brain and thinking sciences; aiming to develop children’s potential intelligence, structure teaching contents conforming to pupil’s thinking characters and closely combined to the educating contents so as to make it consistent with the student’s frequent operating curriculums teaching pattern of “Practicality – Idea – symbol”.
b.   Follow the division and corporation relation of brain?hand and brain, aiming to thoroughly develop human being’s mental performance, take learning and knowing, especially the calculating process as the carrier of developing students in attention?observation?memory?thought?together with feeling?attitude and method mainly to penetrate and incorporate man’s thought?feeling and attitude into the activities of mastering?constructing?digesting?practicing and creativity.

(2).    Research Method

  1. Use the method of natural experiment, together with the investigation?experience summarizing?observation?case analysis, etc and by means of the combination of traverse and vertical methods, we are to promote students in education and psychology and so place the research at a dynamic status, i.e. to investigate issues from view of its natural development.
  2. Resource of student. The students are to be classed through casual draw-sampling method in accordance with the new enrolling list. All the teachers are to be determined by means of volunteering and administratively appointed.
  3. Since this research features in difficulty, long duration of time, plenty of personnel involvement, to maintain the advantage in wholeness and the powerful system and to guide?regulate and control the research system and process effectively, we have constructed our basic pattern in task researching? standard researching procedures and methods.
  1. Tracing-back the Research Result


(1).    Development of the Students in the Experimental class
To observe the students’ development, using the combination of both traversable (Study achievements?thinking?feeling?attitude?methods, etc.) and vertical (Various phases of primary?junior and higher schools), the observation? recording?periodical analysis must be timely and effectively.
a.   The achievement in primary mathematic shows a trend of improvement far beyond normal expectation. We have carried out three counter-tests over 20,000 students in both the experimental and normal classes of five grades from primary school in various places. Result of the contrast trial is remarkable (As shown in Table 1).

According to the data shown in Table 1, the mathematic scores of students in the experimental class are higher than those in normal class. Some of the score are higher than 20 points, which marks the great different. It is worth to point out that even the worst student in the experimental class having nearly the same score than students who are intermediate level in the normal class. Furthermore, not even higher than students at the same grade, but is higher than those of normal class who are senior than them. The trend of student achievement in low grade exceeds those in higher grade is formed. Relevant referent data is not provided in considering with the limitation of the space.

      1. Student’s quality of thinking is obviously developed. According to the testing indices of mathematic capacity, namely, we measured student’s smartness through accurate and fast calculation; we measured student’s agility through test questions, for which one question has many answers and with questions changed in various forms. Furthermore, we measured our student’s profundity of thinking by means of using sum up quantity relation and arithmetic theorem to judge?infer and calculate figure’s area; we also measured our student’s original creative ability by means of checking the achievement obtained from self compiled applicable questions. Eventually the testing results show that the performance of students in experimental class is obviously better than those in normal class (As shown in Tables 2 and 3).


Through the entire data as shown above, we may understand that the corrective rate of answers made by students in experimental class is higher than those in normal class and so is the speed of answering, which is faster by one third to one second. Obviously, the measure of our experiment is successful in the speed of thinking activity. Table 2 also shows that no matter the quantity and category of one question with several answers, or the development level for composite analysis, there is a remarkable of achievement between the experimental and the normal classes. Such discrepancy is quite or obviously serious from grade 2 to grade 5. Therefore, one can see that the measures of teaching and educating are the principal factor promoting student’s sensitivity in thinking.
From Table 3, one may find out the distinct difference of the scores between the experimental and the normal regardless the contents (materials) of self-compiled applicable questions or the independent ability in compiling the questions.
(1) As far as the content is concerned, the difference caused by digit-based question compiling is more serious than image-based question compiling. This has shown that our experiment measures not only a help to improve pupil’s ability in self compiling applicable questions, but their processing talents towards the abstractive information.
(2)  As for independence, the distinct difference existing between the experimental and the normal is mainly counted on semi and complete independence of compilation while the ability of simulation in compilation has little difference. Therefore, with the help of our experiment measures, pupils not only increase their ability of self compiling applicable questions, but promote their independence in taking countermeasures against difficulties and abnormal situations.

      1. It boosts up healthy development of feeling and attitude. The basic and training tool that we used for research – the abacus, is kinetic with sounds, which is both a teaching aid and a learning aid and further, it may also be regarded as a doll to kid. Fiddling with the abacus, the student seems playing. Calculating through the aid of this tool is both accurate and fast, which brings fun to the student. After the calculation is transferred from abacus to mental arithmetic, students are eager to check who is the faster in calculating. Hence, it makes students active in answering questions with high spirits and concentrating their attention and that has brought endless living to the class, eliminated learning fatigue. This is also applicable to applied questions in question filling?condition amending?recomposing and self-compiling. Students may either think and count by means of watching the numbers, or think and count by listening to the numbers. By means of that, organs of eyes?ears?hands and brain are utilized altogether which keep changing the exciting point of human pallium and make children exciting for a comparative long period in classroom activities. This has facilitated student participating actively in mathematic study and so to obtain the experience of success during the learning activity; exercise their will of overcoming difficulty and establishing self confidence; experience the mathematic activity full of exploration and creation and its preciseness; form the attitude of a factual and realistic work style and cultivate the habit of questioning and thinking on one’s own. To interpenetrate and integrate their feelings and attitudes in the mastery?internalization?operation and creation of knowledge.

Zhou Tienong, vice-president of Chinese People's Political Consultative Committee, Dr. Qiao Nongqing, director of America Education Department Project and many national and international professors and learners are very excited and give high praise after inspecting the students’ curriculum situation. Besides excitement, they subscribe more than RMB40000 to the two schools they inspect on the spot without preparation.

      1. Students are in good development in higher-one of secondary school. In order to master the situation that students are adapt at the social life in the future and obtain the further knowledge?skills?attitude and methods, we tracking survey the situation of the students who are in the experimental class in their middle and high school according to the principle of “Practice is the sole criterion for testing truth” during the fifteen years from 1991 to 2005. According to the survey in Keqi?NingCheng County?YuanBaoSan district?Youqi and so on, the students in experimental class develops better than whom in ordinary class.

After the experimental class of SanQian Experimental Primary School promoting to junior high school, with the students less than one fifth of the whole population, there are five out of six class monitors of all the junior high school from experimental class, which account for 89%; there are three out of six commissaries in charge of studies from experimental class, which account for 50%; Among the 60 commissaries of all subjects, there are 27 commissaries in experimental class, which account for 45%; there are 4 out of 6 members in student union from experimental class, which account for 67% and 27 out of 30 group members of first batch from experimental class, which account for 90%; other drum members, dancing members, sports members separately account for 50% of the total; the students in experimental class who are ranking front 10 of study in every class account for 40% of total. After graduation for senior high school, the proportion of entering senior high school in ordinary class is 16.8% while the proportion of entering senior high school in experimental class is 32.8%, and there are 8 students in experimental class ranking front ten including the first. In the 29 students enter senior high school in experimental class, 17 students are in middle-high class and 12 are in highest class. In 7 classes in senior high school, there are 3 students in experimental class undertake monitor, among which 2 students are awarded excellent class leader. We tracing inspect that the situation of middle school and higher school of students in experimental class of other four primary schools in four Qi (four Counties) are the same with the above (as shown in Table 4, table 5, table 6, table 7, table 8, table 9).




From the tables, we can observe obviously that the academic record and comprehensive quality of the students in experimental class are apparently better than that of the students in ordinary class in higher grade school (junior and senior high school). This phenomenon is neither for a period nor for a school, but has universality. In order to know the complete situation of students in experimental class, we inquiry the middle-school teachers?headmaster? director?parents and students themselves through symposium during Progressive Investigation, and they unanimously consider that the students in experimental class: (1) are more active and have higher ability in thought; (2) have the courage to express their views and dare to debate; (3) have good study habits and stronger interests; (4) are better in analyzation and expression; (5) the proportion of poor students is much less.

(2).    Development of the Teachers in the Experimental class

The responsibility and spirit of teachers are strengthened. After receiving the experimental task, he or she will integrate the study?teaching and research and will become well-known teachers in school and even in the whole city from ordinary and unknown teachers through inspection, recording, data accumulation and analysis years after years. For example, in 1995, the Chifeng Primary School praised 7 teaching experts in math, among which there were 4 experimental teachers, and 2 teachers were recommended to Inner Mongolia and named as teaching experts in Mongolia Autonomous Region who were all experimental teachers. One of them as the only representative of Inner Mongolia gave a model lesson in national academic conference in 1997. There are not only master teacher of fifty years old but also young teachers. During these over ten years, the quantity of papers submitted is increasing and the quality is improving year by year. The eight experimental works we compiled were not only the reflection of the research achievement of experimental teachers, but also the reflection of the improvement of their research ability. According to the statistics, the works of more than 95% teachers were awarded excellent thesis of city, qi, county and district. The quick improvement of teachers’ spirit and profession quality brought about the enhancement of education quality; therefore, the experimental teachers receive increasing respect and acknowledgement from the society.

According to the primary statistics, among the teachers undertaking this research in recent years, the proportion of senior teachers in middle school, excellent teachers in autonomous region or in city, teaching experts is 30% higher than that of the average. In 2001, Chifeng City praised four teaching experts in primary math who were all the experimental teachers, while 95% experimental teachers were awarded by the school. Practically, there is one experimental teacher in average of 3500 teachers awarded “National Excellent Teachers” and there is one experimental teacher in average of 150 in our research.

(3).    Social Evaluation

International: United Nations Children's Fund Experts with the accompany of Wang Peiying, the chief of Inner Mongolia Education Department maintained that this research was “the successful education reform project of primary education” and shot a specific film at the theme of “break of human intelligent development” with investment after inspection in Chifeng in 1997. In 1998, they invested RMB70000 to support Inner Mongolia Education Department to recognize teachers training and education promotion.
“The seminar of basic education at home and aboard in 1997” was held in Hohhot, Inner Mongolia. At the conclusion of the seminar, Madam Yu Xiaowei, American-Chinese learner said: “Chifeng Primary School’s research on mathematics abacus is of great value.” After the seminar, the American-Chinese Dr. Guo Ziwen and Dr. Ma Pingli went to the downtown of Chifeng to specially inspect this education. After this, America Science and Education Association with Dr. Qiao Longqing as its principal donate money for schools which are under processing this research every year. Until the end of 2005, it has denoted near 3.1 million Yuan for purchasing books, teaching material of musical and sports, providing financial aid to excellent poor students in moral as academic performances and rewarding teachers and students good at study, and besides these, it represents that it will continue to contribution in the future.
Domestic: The commission with member of State Council Degree Committee?Dr. Lin Chongde, doctorate tutor of students in Beijing Normal University?Huo Maozheng, director of editing teaching materials and curriculum compilation of primary school?famous educators and the former member of the National Committee of CPPCC as vice-directors completely examines this research and gets the result that “This research keeps ahead in the researches of the same type over the country”?“The example of successful quality education” ?“with high scientificity” ?“with strong innovation” and “It has popularization value”.
“China Education Paper” published an article of “manual operation and strengthen ideas” in 14th April, 1998, which introduced this research. The newspapers?magazines and “Xinhua Series” etc. sent copy notice at the same day. Twenty-six newspapers?periodicals and “People Daily” in the column of current time sent transshipment notice one after another. They considered this article that “its subject is in conformance with the current, ideas are original, and has strong theory and high reading value”, “it has greater promoting significance and referential value” etc.
Inter of district: “Inner Mongolia Education”?“Chifeng Daily”?Chifeng Boardcast Station?Chifeng Television Station etc. reported the research many times, and “Inner Mongolia Education” reported it with long speech as the theme of “The significance of teaching reform in Ba-Lin Plain” in the second period in 1999, which aroused favorable response in mass readers and is awarded the most popular article among readers. This research gains a lot of praise and acknowledgement of parents. Parents in many towns as Keqi Zhirui?Linxizhen Dongjie?Wongqi Qiaotou etc took the initiative in raising fund for school; the town governments of Youqi Baiyin Hesuo?Laofangshen Village of Linxi Town?Fengshuigou Town of Yuanbao Mountains area etc. were active in raising wages and rewards for teachers in experimental class; Xinshengfang Village, Guangxin Town of Keqi pushed down earth classrooms initiatively to built up new tile-roofed houses.

?.   Discuss

The following discuss the primary measures and achievements of this research.

  1. Manual operation, strengthening ideas and the thought development of young children. Abacus and line segments have the characteristics of sensible direct viewing and rational abstraction, and they are the unification of abstraction and materiality. Abacus is used for counting with beads and each row represents value of digit. The length of line segment represents the relation of numbers and quantity. Abacus operation and line segment graph drawing requires students operating with their both hands four fingers, and they can see and touch during the complete process, which makes they have a deep perception and form clearer ideas. Students can form abundant ideas through several perceptions of abacus computation and line segment graph and they are trained with intensive speaking (including non-voice language) during the manual operation (including emulation actions), which has improved students’ ideas development and speeded up the process. For example, calculation with the application of abacus, every student has a visual abacus with which students can speak how they reckon the abacus and they speak in a rational way. On this basis, students are trained to see or listen to the formulas without abacus to imagine the abacus beads during the operation and do the reckoning actions and say the reckoning process, which can make them strengthen their thoughts. Teachers lead the students’ thoughts to the right direction of development with their saying and actions.

Dr. Lin Chongde pointed out: “Ideas are the transition and bridge from specific perception to abstract thinking. Without this transition and bridge, the abstract thinking and rational knowledge are impossible.”?“The process of children mastering mathematics concept and operation process is the development procedure from direct perception to ideas and then to the concepts. Ideas are the key point of this transition.” Mr. Jean Piaget, the Swiss psychologist, pointed out: “To know a subject, you must do with your hands.” Bu Lumu pointed out: “The development of concept is from application, reflection to accordance.” Teaching has to be according to the sequence of cognition and development. Suh Mulisiki said: “The aim of drawing the application subject is to ensure students’ thinking is from imaginable thinking to abstract logical thinking.”
The above statements of learners at home and aboard indicate: “Ideas play a very important role in people’s perception. Presentational operation is a key content in people’s thinking process. Primary children, especially the very young children, have abundant ideas of various objects that they have apperceived; their language and thinking need the support of ideas and situation, so their representative thinking is their dominant thinking”. Primary language and mathematics as the start of individual literature play an important basic role to individual’s later learning and life development. Children of school age are under the key period of intelligence development and language development; Chinese language and abacus computation and their teaching methods have the special characteristics of training representative thinking and developing potential abilities, but they are ignored; for example, the primary mathematic teaching materials of various editions published belong to the direct operation of symbols or the recombination of symbols during calculation process and their process are “symbol---symbol” or “object---symbol”, which lack or ignore the training of children’s representative thinking. Researches show that “The reason of some primary students falling behind in their study is that they are short of some stage or some stage is insufficient in abilities development.” This research combines the abacus computation to the results of brain science and thinking science, forming a primary mathematic course of “object---idea---symbol” to fill up or fully process the training of representative thinking and make the primary mathematic teaching materials, especially the calculation as the carrier of students’ potential abilities development, which makes the knowledge, skills, thinking, exploration, affections and attitude penetrate and integrate with each other. A lot of tracking facts prove that this primary mathematic course can promote students’ thinking development effectively and advance children’s mathematic comprehensive test performance obviously, among which, the ability of numbers’ cognition and calculation is promoted significantly obviously.

  1. Abacus mental arithmetic and the development of primary children’s calculation abilities and the enhancement of brain potential abilities. Hands play an important part in brain development during human evolution, which is knowledge to human. This research fully makes use of our traditional calculation tool---abacus to train student operating on abacus with either both hands or right hand writing formula and left hand imitating to operate on abacus, which can make their both hands flexible. According to the research, the little muscle on children’s hand section is not fully grown in primary school, so abacus computation can promote its growth so that to coordinate sense, action and language and promote intelligent development. From operating abacus with both hands to gradually getting rid of the object operation (operating abacus) and the restricts of physical actions as outer skeleton and muscle through training of program language operation to achieve highly “inner development” and then to a new operational way of physiological and mental mechanism different from ordinary, which ensures fast speed and high accuracy to a marvelous extent. This helps students’ whole brain developing, promotes inner growth and outer developments transforming with each other and imaginary thinking and abstract thinking cooperating and promoting with each other to make the unconscious psychology reflect to consciousness quickly when necessary. “For a long period, traditional education is on the word (symbol) thinking standing for the whole thoughts and has two tendencies of right-brain development ignorance and insufficient left-brain development and improper measures in actual teaching.”  We consider, in the reform process of new curriculum, developing children’s potential abilities with scientific research results to lay the necessary and beneficial foundation for primary students’ sustainable development is a significant research project with profound influence and an indispensable content to curriculum reform. The tracking research of experimental students’ performance in higher one secondary school fully proved that abacus mental arithmetic has an important worth to this respect.
  2. The data and facts from research tell us the research and development has not only the Chinese profound civilization but also has the advanced achievements for time, which is one of the today’s basic reforms and future teaching materials. “Only do this, can carry on Chinese profound traditional civilization and bring it to a great height of development, which prevents from either unpractical operations or old modes; can absorb and borrow every outstanding achievement of world civilization, neither out of touch with reality or blind exclusion nor copying mechanically and applying indiscriminately.”

After the World Mathematic Conference held in Beijing in 2002, World Abacus Computation Conference was held in Beijing in October, 2002. 16 delegations from Australia?Brunei?Canada?Indonesia?Japan, Korea, Malaysia, Singapore? Thailand?Tonga?America?Venezuela?China mainland?China Hong Kong?China Macao?and China Taiwan etc. attended this conference. 15 people of Inner Mongolia as the principal of the head of Financial Hall and chief of Abacus Zhusuan Association and the writer was one of them. At the same year, the second conference as the theme “science learning and brain research” of OECD (Organization of Economic Cooperation and Development) was held in London England. It determined the research between 2002 and 2005 focuses on three fields which correlate closely to policy and have highly applied worthy: literacy? calculation and lifelong learning. The conference pointed out “Acquiring mathematic abilities is difficult for many children in school, it will even influence their study at full age (including difficulty in calculation)”; the new achievements and targets of brain research are “early acquirement of calculation ability” ?“the gene of difficulty in calculation and the basis of attention” and so on. Wei Yu, the Deputy Minister of Education Department and Principal of Chinese Engineer Academy lead a team to attend the conference. According to the statistics of China Zhusuan Association, from 1991, abacus mental arithmetic has been developed quickly around the country; especially from 1996, the annual increase population of learning the abacus computation is about 400,000 on average. In 2002, the Education Science and Research Program Team classifies the three calculation combination of “abacus computation, oral arithmetic and written calculation” as the “Fifteen” key scientific research item for Education Department; more than ten provinces and cities take part in this research. Li Zhendao, the famous physicist and winner of the Nobel Prize said: “Our ancestors created computers for an early time, which is the abacus we are now using.” Fu Hailun, the outstanding learner, said: “Abacus computation has not only the function of computer, but also has a very good educational function.” Lv Xingwei, the famous educator said: “Abacus mental arithmetic plays a beneficial part to the growth and development of brain. It should be promoted in a larger range.” Dr. Yin Wengang in Chinese Research Academy put forward six respects in development of brain function at the premise of foundation of “the content of development is the basic functions of brain” and significance of “the content of training is the functions which can be promoted”. The example of each content referred to abacus mental arithmetic and specific pointed out “abacus mental arithmetic, as a means of Chinese intelligence development plays an important role in human brains’ functions development.” Learners of Shen Deli, Wu Fumei etc. had their statements on this point too. Under this atmosphere and situation, abacus mental arithmetic, a combination of national tradition and modern science and a project of gaining acknowledgements of learners at home and aboard and outstanding effects should have developed better in the current reform of new curriculum in our country, but the reality of its development is hard to understand.
We consider, “lower down the primary calculation standard” for the reason of “information period” and “popularization of computer”, which is for “training not mechanically” to make the primary students devote more time to exploration, reasoning and solving problems; ignoring or canceling the development of brain potential abilities and thinking training with calculation is from one extreme to another extreme. It is ridiculous and harmful, the same as reducing people’s walking and running demand for the reason of “transportation vehicles are faster and faster” to ignore or cancel people’s health-building actions.

V.   Thinking of the topic

Like other new-born objects, the primary mathematic curriculum experiment as the characteristics of abacus computation and oral calculation also has its life cycle and various defects. Researchers and teachers must pay attentions to this and take measures to its problem in time.
At the very beginning and after obvious effects of abacus computation and oral calculation, students will have fresh experience and be in a state of high excitation. But when the fresh feeling disappears or after it satisfies their temporary performance, students will get tired. Therefore, teachers will take care of students’ movement at any time and regulate their feelings properly. 
Abacus mental arithmetic stresses interest; pay attention to avoid mechanical training. One of its effects is that students can calculate fast and accurate. Therefore, the players of annual competition for abacus computation held by National Financial Department, Abacus Zhusuan Association are selected from these students. Training player takes amount of exercise, time and energy and will occupy students’ extra curriculum time which may arouse their grumblings. So teachers should often communicate with students and solve these problems in a proper way.
Abacus mental arithmetic is a beneficial exercise to brain, but the benefit to brain not only relies on abacus mental arithmetic and it requires the cooperation of each subject and each aspect. From the point of curriculum, we consider that abacus mental arithmetic should be organized and combined with primary mathematics, which requires deep theoretical research and experience exploration.

(Author’s unit: Curriculum Teaching Materials Committee of Inner Mongolia Education Association)



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