The Abacus and the Numeral FrameLater Uses in the United States
By the mid-twentieth century, numeral frames were used less often in classrooms in the United States, but sold widely as an educational toy and less often as a device for the blind. Beads moved on rods or wires also remained part of classroom instruction. The Smithsonian collections include a “place value board,” a device in which plastic discs are moved along bent wires to teach elementary school students about units, tens, thousands and so forth.
"The Abacus and the Numeral Frame - Later Uses in the United States" showing 1 items.
- This is a device for introducing elementary school students to the concept of place values. Six parallel wires, each in the shape of an inverted U, fit into holes in a wooden block that serves as a base. Each wire carries nine beads. The beads on the front of the wire represent digits. A tape that runs across the block contains labels for the wires - from one on the rightmost wire to hundreds of thousands on the leftmost. Robert Naidorf (born 1961), the son of the donors, made the object in about 1968. It was used by Marjorie Naidorf, Robert's mother, as a third grade teacher at Parklawn Elementary School from 1971 until 1991. Place value boards are also sold commercially.
- Currently not on view
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- National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center