What is an Abacus Bee?
- A math competition using an abacus or mental math skills to compute multiple problems in a designated timeframe
- 4-6 testing rounds of competition will take place depending on skill level
- Some rounds will require students to read math problems in print/braille and solve on the abacus or using mental math
- The dictation round will consist of problems being read aloud while students compute on the abacus or mental math and then record the final answer
What skills do students need?
- Read math problems in large print or braille (type of problem depends on student level). Record their answers in print or braille.
- Write or braille their first/last name, category name and round at the top of each page (if they can only spell their name, that’s fine, we can work with them).
- Write or braille an itemized list (problem letters a, b, c, d, etc.) and answer next to the problem letter.
- For the dictation round, listen to a string of numbers and operations and have to mentally calculate the answer or solve on the abacus and record their answers in the same manner as above.
- Mental math can be used. An abacus is not required.
Who is invited?
- K-12 students with visual impairments who use an abacus or mental math*
- Parents and family members
- Children not competing can still attend with families to participate in workshops and fun activities
- Teachers of the visually impaired, paraprofessionals, volunteers, etc. who are available to assist
*Students who rely on mental math skills instead of an abacus are still eligible to compete.
- Event registration is not for students competing. This is only for teachers, parents, family members, volunteers, etc. who plan to attend the event to support students.
How can students be prepared?
- Sign up for APH’s “Abaci and Oreos” camp!
- Practice calculating math problems using an abacus on their own, with a family member, or with a TVI
- Keep their mental math skills sharp