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Most of you should know that the abacus is a kind of calculator whose use was widespread in China and Japan, since ancient times. In Japan, it is known as the soroban and is still widely used in elementary schools for assisting calculations in adding, subtracting, multiplication and division. Each row in the soroban has five beads. Four beads below the reckoning bar in the area called Earth and one bead above, in the area called Heaven. Each earth bead has a value of one and each heaven bead has a value of five. Moving from right to left, each increases in value. For instance, the first row has a value of one, the second a value of ten and the third a value of hundred and so on. The amount of fun your wee little geek is going to have learning maths is incalculable!