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**The special thing of this test is that even the adults have not finished reading the lesson, they have given the results very quickly.**

Recently, a short clip recorded a math test for elementary **school students in the national contest for excellent students 2015** was shared at a rapid speed on the internet. The special thing of this test is that even the adults have not finished reading the lesson, they have given the results very quickly.

Specifically, the lesson is a calculation: "Eight minus three, minus four, plus two, one, minus three, plus four, minus six, plus eight, minus four, plus two, two, minus six, plus seven, equals? " (8- 3- 4+ 2+ 1+ 1-3+ 4- 6+ 8- 4+ 2+ 2 -6 + 7 =?). And the answer must be given right after the lesson is over. The answer given by the judges is 9.

After this test was shared on the internet, a young man said, *"I have not finished listening to the topic, so you have already figured it out."* Many others still can't remember the numbers that were read in the paper, not to mention the results.

So how do elementary school students be able to **calculate in** a super-fast way? The answer is **the soroban method** of **Japan** , which uses the **imaginary ancient abacus image** to mentally calculate calculations in a fast way.

This mental math method is based on an **ancient soroban abacus** , originally from China and imported from Japan in the 1600s. It became a very popular calculation tool at that time in Asia.

The ancient abacus of Japanese people.

**This super-fast mental arithmetic method** uses an imaginary soroban abacus to quickly add and subtract numbers. This method is thought out by Japanese people and considered as a way to **train the brain** .

Even this super-fast mental math method is so developed that even a Soroban tournament held in Japan with the highest level is **Flash Anzan.**

In this contest, 15 numbers will appear on the screen in a split second. Each number is between 100 and 999, the competitor will have to add all of these numbers to produce the result. The craziest thing is that these 15 numbers appear in just 1.85 seconds and the world record holder has answered only 1.7 seconds after the numbers appear.

If you watch the video above, you can't even remember the numbers that appeared on the screen.

**The soroban method** is the same, regardless of the numbers in the calculation. Contest participants also said they could not remember the numbers they had counted. Only the final result is always accurate.

Soroban is a method that helps train both **the left hemisphere and the right hemisphere.** Why is that?

Because this method consists of two parts: **imagine the abacus image and perform calculations.** Meanwhile, the left hemisphere of the brain is responsible for logic calculations while the right hemisphere of the brain is responsible for spatial imagination.

Therefore, while performing **mental arithmetic** , for example: When hearing the number 75, that information is immediately transmitted to the left brain and the left brain transmits information to the right brain. Here, the right brain will visualize and imagine the movement of the abacus particles at position 75 as shown. Thus, the left brain only remembers the information is the number 75, and the right brain visualizes and imagines clearly the number 75 on the abacus.

This super mental arithmetic method is considered as one of the **brain training methods** for children aged 4-16 years. However, according to Dr. Le Thong Nhat - PhD in Methods of Math Teaching, Deputy General Secretary of the Association of Mathematical Teaching, this is an **anti-educational method.**

Because the brain training methods Super Brain like Soroban only work when the young brain has fully developed. Training too early can cause certain injuries because the **brain is overloaded.**

Besides, learning how to calculate mental arithmetic does not help **increase thinking** when solving math problems. Because it is only when you find a solution that mental arithmetic works. New math solutions are the thinking that needs to be taught to children.

These super mental math classes are growing.

In addition, this method turns them into a **computing machine** rather than thinking development. Since all mental math numbers are applied to an existing formula, they only do the same job again.

So for those who have never learned the **super mental** math method, Soroban is like a strange thing that makes even adults admire.

However, for the Soroban mental math competitions in Japan, it is a different level that not everyone can do. These competitions are certified in the world and recorded in **the Guinness Book of Records.**

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