Monday, April 4, 2016

Junior High Junction: How to Make a Simple Abacus

My daughter, Mikaela, made an abacas when she started her new math program, Principals of Mathematics. We didn't follow their directions, because we didn't have all of the supplies. However, we did modify it with what we had. It turned out to be a really cute project, and she has used it numerous times with her math program.

Here is what you will need:

a 4x6 picture frame, no glass {we used the kind found in the craft section}
5 pipe cleaners
50 pony beads in two different colors {25 of each}
thumb tacks
hot glue

Step One: Arrange the pipe-cleaners where they will be evenly spaced in the "window" of the picture frame. Insert the thumbtacks evenly on the inside of the frame.

Step Two: Wrap one end of the pipe-cleaner around a thumbtack. Secure with hot glue. Do this with one end of each pipe-cleaner.

Step Three: Add 5 beads on one color and then 5 beads of the other color to each pipe-cleaner.

Step Four: Pull the pipe-cleaner tightly and secure around the other thumbtack with hot glue.

{The back of the abacas}

Step Five: Teach your child how to use this abacus!

This is a great teaching tool, and it was a lot of fun for Mikalea to make. She decorated her frame with coordinating Sharpies, which made it more personal. It looks really cute!

What math manipulatives have you made?

1 comment:

  1. What a fun project. I've always wondered how abacuses work never having used one myself. My boys and I will have to try this and practice using them together. Thanks for hosting!