(October 28, 2022)
Dear Members of the Council and Distinguished Representatives,
The Fourth Enlarged Meeting of the Fifth Council of the World Association of Abacus and Mental Arithmetic (hereinafter referred to as WAAMA) is held in video conference on the same day as the 20th anniversary of its founding, which is of great commemorative significance. This work report is hereby submitted to the Fourth Session of the Fifth Council of WAAMA.
I. In retrospect, WAAMA has been steadily improving its work and generated fruitful results.
Over the past two years, WAAMA and its members have made great efforts to overcome the adverse effects of the pandemic, and have achieved great results in organizational construction, theoretical research, competition and appraisal, teacher education, communication and publicity. In review of the past two years, the main achievements are as follows:
On the organization structure, in April 2021, WAAMA held the third meeting of the Fifth Council in video conference, reviewed and approved the admission of Russian Abacus Maths of Mental arithmetic-AMMA into WAAMA. In November 2021, WAAMA held the Third Enlarged Meeting of the Fifth Council and the Fourth Executive Council Meeting of the Fifth Council in video conference to review and approve the admission of three units, namely, EDUKIDS TECHNOLOGY SDN. BHD.in Malaysia, ABACUS MENTAL MATHS PROGRAM in Nigeria and PT BAINIAN SHENMO EDUCATION INTERNATIONAL INDONESIA, to join WAAMA. In July 2022, WAAMA held the fifth executive meeting of the fifth Council in the form of correspondence to review and approve the admission of Shenmo Education Centre Pte. Ltd. In Singapore to WAAMA. In the past two years, we have welcomed five new members, and the number of members of WAAMA has increased to 54. In terms of member units, the Hubei Abacus and Mental Arithmetic Association, China held its sixth member Congress. The Seventh Member Congress of Zhusuan Association of Jiangsu Province, China was also held. The Taiwan Chamber of Commerce, Taiwan, China held the annual abacus meeting, which further consolidated the organizational construction and clarified the development plan.
On theoretical research, in November 2021, WAAMA held the Sixth Symposium on Academic Exchange of Abacus and Mental Arithmetic Education, with the theme of "Protection and Development of Abacus as Intangible Cultural Heritage", and invited five experts to make keynote speeches. Alexsander K. Taslim, Vice President of WAAMA and President of the SEMPOA SIP Indonesia, introduced ten innovative measures taken by the Association in the past two years to fight against the epidemic. Dr. Liu Qinying, an invited expert of the conference, introduced the integration path of abacus and mathematics education from the perspective of arithmetic algorithm, as well as the value and research progress of abacus in developing intelligence. Ma Xin, an invited expert of the conference, introduced the positive role of abacus in cultural communication and educational practice with the theme of "Methods and Theoretical Analysis of Abacus and Mental Arithmetic in Educational Practice and Cultural Communication". Tan Bin, director of WAAMA and founder of the UK-SINO GUILD LTD, elaborated on the value of abacus learning in improving learning efficiency, enhancing learning ability and cultivating excellent quality with the title of "Education and Learning of Chinese Wisdom: Abacus Mental Arithmetic in the UK". Shumeiko Elena, a representative of the member units of WAAMA and director of Abacus Maths of Mental arithmetic-AMMA in Russia, fully affirmed the cultural value and educational function of intangible cultural heritage abacus, and looked forward to the bright future of abacus playing a greater role in modern society. The latest achievements have also been made in the scientific research of abacus and mental arithmetic. The Chinese Abacus and Mental Arithmetic Association has spent three years on many topics, such as "Research on the Influencing Factors of the Transfer Ability of Popular Abacus and Mental Arithmetic and Its Cognitive Behavior and Brain Mechanism". Through long-term follow-up and using the means of brain mechanism research, the important brain areas of abacus mental arithmetic processing and the core brain areas of migration effect have been explored. The theoretical framework of abacus mental arithmetic brain science has laid a solid scientific theoretical foundation for better playing the role of abacus mental arithmetic in enlightening intelligence and promoting the practice and innovation of abacus and mental arithmetic education.
On competition, in the past two years, the member units of WAAMA have carried out a variety of competitions: in December 2021, the Chinese Abacus and Mental Arithmetic Association successfully held the "2021 National Abacus Mental Arithmetic Network Answering Activity" by using the paperless answering method of "network + terminal + live broadcast", with a total of 7266 players from 1488 teams participating. In December 2021, the Taoyuan Multi-Education Association, Taiwan, China held the 6th Taoyuan Mayor's Cup Abacus Mental Arithmetic and Mathematics Open Invitational Competition. In June 2022, the Nigerian ABACUS MENTAL MATHS PROGRAM held the 4th Shenmo Nigerian Abacus and Mental Arithmetic Competition. In July 2022, the Abacus and Mental Arithmetic Association of Jilin Province, China and the Jilin Provincial Education Association jointly held the 6th National Abacus and Mental Arithmetic Selection Competition and the 31st Abacus and Mental Calculus Excellent Achievement Exhibition in Jilin Province. In August 2022, the Chinese Abacus and Mental Arithmetic Association held the 6th National Abacus and Mental Arithmetic Competition as scheduled. A total of 30 teams and 353 athletes participated in the competition. The competition made full use of modern science and technology, and successfully completed a series of work such as competition registration, supervision and confidentiality, performance generation, summary and ranking by combining online and offline methods, which accumulated important experience for innovative international competitions. In addition, the Chinese Abacus and Mental Arithmetic Association and the Taiwan Chamber of Commerce, Taiwan, China jointly held the 29th and 30th "Cross-Strait Abacus and Mental Arithmetic Communication Competition" on schedule, with a total of 425,000 participants from Chinese mainland.
On appraisal, the new edition of WAAMA's Special Pilot Program for the Launch of Abacus and Mental Arithmetic Certificates has been continuously promoted, and many members of WAAMA, such as the Australia Abacus and Mental Arithmetic Inc., the Creative Abacus Association, Hong Kong SAR, China, the ISTAR Education of Canada, and the UK-SINO GUILD LTD, the United Kingdom all participated in the events, which made contributions to promoting the standardization construction of the appraisal work of WAAMA and the practice of authoritative international appraisal standards. What’s more, since the implementation of the new appraisal system by the Chinese Abacus and Mental Arithmetic Association on January 1, 2021, as of September 30, 2022, 1265 appraisal bases (sites) have been built, 4141 appraisers have been trained, and 219441 appraisals have been completed.
On teacher education, In January 2022, the Zhusuan Association of Changchun, China held a seminar on abacus and mental arithmetic teaching and a training course for teachers in Changchun in 2022. In March and July 2022, the Chinese Abacus and Mental Arithmetic Association held two training courses for inheritors of abacus (abacus culture) as intangible cultural heritage online, with a total of 1080 trainees. In April 2022, the Zhusuan Association of Jiangsu Province, China held the fourth training activity for abacus and mental arithmetic seed teachers in Jiangsu Province. In May 2022, the Korea Institution of International Abacus and Mathematics Association, South Korea held a national training activity for abacus instructors in Daejeon, Korea. In August 2022, the first training course for abacus and mental arithmetic trainers (primary) was held online by the Chinese Abacus and Mental Arithmetic Association in 2022, with 419 teachers participating in the training. In the future, WAAMA will focus on the training of abacus and mental arithmetic teachers, actively contact member units to carry out exchanges and research activities, and constantly promote the quality and efficiency of teacher training.
On communication and publicity, first is to innovate on public welfare activities. In July 2021, the Chinese Abacus and Mental Arithmetic Association held the "China Abacus Intangible Cultural Heritage Rural Revitalization Public Welfare Action", which selected 14 schools and nursing homes as the first batch of pilot units, and provided assistance to the pilot units, including teaching materials, abacuses, teacher training and research. Second is to expand online communication channels, as a key task put forward by the Fifth Council, WAAMA has revised its official website and officially launched it on August 8, 2022. The new version of the website extensively publicizes the activities, news and academic achievements of member units, and is committed to building a treasure house of resources for "consultation, co-construction and sharing". All members are encouraged to pay close attention to it, promote the website and actively contribute, so as to effectively enhance the international influence of WAAMA and jointly build this media platform. The third is to focus on the effectiveness and academic nature of communication. In the past two years, the WAAMA News Journal has been edited and published, which includes not only the news trends of member units, but also the papers and opinions of experts and scholars, as well as the New Year's messages, congratulatory letters for activities and letters of condolences for disasters, so that the journal has become an internal journal with "frequent communication, effective news and in-depth research". In the future, WAAMA will further strive to improve the academic level of this internal journal and strive to build a platform for theoretical and practical exchanges. At the same time, with the help of the journal of the CAMAA - Abacus and Abacus Calculation, we continue to make the voice of abacus, tell good stories about abacus, actively spread the culture of abacus, and have been praised by the vast number of abacus supporters, enthusiasts, experts, teachers, and students.
II. In prospect, WAAMA enjoys great potential and development space
Directors and representatives, this year marks the 20th anniversary of the founding of the WAAMA. On the basis of our achievements and experience, we are standing at a new historical starting point and shouldering the important task of further promoting the long-term and healthy development of the world abacus and mental arithmetic. In terms of international exchanges and academic research, WAAMA still has great room for development and improvement, which are very promising. To this end, we would like to share three points.
First, we will adhere to the development direction of abacus and mental arithmetic guided by academic research. Throughout many changes in the education sector, discipline theory is often put forward first, followed by educational practice. In order to better support the educational practice activities of member units, the future WAAMA should further strengthen academic exchanges and enhance academic level, carry out various forms of academic seminars with the themes of cultural heritage, arithmetic, intellectual principles and educational practice, and highlight the principle of "authoritative guidance and extensive cooperation". Let the academic exchange activities of WAAMA become a platform for top abacus and mental arithmetic experts to display their research results, a stage for front-line teachers to share their teaching achievements and experiences, and a platform for abacus and mental arithmetic practitioners to strengthen exchanges and seek common development.
Second, we will adhere to local conditions and publicize more accurately. We should take science as the guide, take the enlightening function of abacus and mental arithmetic as the core, and work hard to improve the quality of abacus and mental arithmetic education and teaching. According to the different backgrounds of teachers and students' level, culture and educational tradition, we should refine the general educational principles, retain and summarize the individualized and differentiated educational experience, so that the abacus and mental arithmetic education system can better adapt to and integrate into the world, and effectively enhance the affinity and effectiveness of abacus dissemination. Let the real enlightening effect become the world-renowned quality assurance of abacus, an "intangible cultural heritage of mankind".
Third, we will adhere to service-oriented and work as a bridge. WAAMA will further strengthen its own organizational construction, actively broaden the channels of communication and exchanges among member units while expanding its membership, and make full use of official websites, internal journals of the association, e-mail exchanges and other carriers to make online exchanges and field research an important way to share experience and inspire innovation. In addition, in the process of organizing meetings, competitions and academic seminars, the Secretariat of WAAMA should listen to the opinions and suggestions of member units, flexibly draw on the excellent experience of international associations, standardize the process, improve the quality, and enhance the popularity and reputation of various activities of WAAMA.
III. Looking forward to 2023, WAAMA will strive in innovation and implement the tasks throughout the year.
In the upcoming year, WAAMA will continue to adhere to promoting and protecting the intangible cultural heritage of abacus, popularizing and developing abacus and mental arithmetic education, strengthening exchanges and cooperation, and further promoting the spread and development of abacus and mental arithmetic in the world.
First, plan and prepare for the Sixth General Assembly of WAAMA, and strive to successfully complete the work of WAAMA. Affected by the epidemic, according to the regulations, the work of the new term, which was originally scheduled for 2022, will be postponed for one year. To this end, we will fully research and understand the development trend of the COVID situation, hold the conference safely and efficiently, and further enhance the unity of member units of WAAMA. The preparatory group will make preparations carefully, and all member units should attach great importance to and cooperate closely with each other so as to unite and work together for the conference.
Second, continue to improve the competition and appraisal of WAAMA. Affected by the epidemic, the 8th World Abacus and Mental Arithmetic Competition has been postponed and has not yet been held. As a large-scale international competition organized by WAAMA, the World Abacus and Mental Arithmetic Competition has been successfully held for seven sessions. It has become an important platform for abacus and mental arithmetic players in various countries and regions to learn from each other and for abacus and mental arithmetic teachers to exchange experience. It has produced a wide range of social impact and has a high gold content. On the basis of paying attention to the development trend of the international epidemic situation, we will keep close contact with all member units, make preparations for holding competitions offline or online as appropriate, and strive to run the 8th World Abacus and Mental Arithmetic Competition well. In terms of appraisal, while further expanding the coverage of the special scheme for appraisal pilot projects, we will also focusing on summarizing and improving the existing appraisal work, so as to promote the internationalization and standardization of the appraisal work of WAAMA.
Third, in order to improve the professional level and teaching quality of abacus and mental arithmetic teachers, we will explore and organize international (regional) abacus and mental arithmetic teacher training projects. On the basis of full investigation and extensive publicity, we will fully consider the actual needs of member units in teacher training, make rational plan, fully prepare, organize and implement relevant research projects, effectively help the growth and promotion of abacus and mental arithmetic teachers, and provide practical help for the globalization and localization of abacus and mental arithmetic education.
Fourth, further broaden the channels of communication and improve the quality of communication. As a joint organization of international non-governmental abacus and mental abacus education and research groups, the communication and interconnection among the member units of WAAMA is the significance of its existence, the method of its work and the goal of its development. We will make full use of existing communication platforms, improve quality and efficiency on the basis of existing resources, and constantly explore and broaden new communication channels to further strengthen and promote friendly exchanges and cooperation among member units, so that WAAMA can better contribute to "experience sharing, information exchange and activity co-organizing" among member units.
Dear members and representatives, WAAMA has been established for 20 years. Twenty years ago, we gathered in Beijing for a common cause, with a common love, jointly initiated the establishment of the World Association of Abacus and Mental Arithmetic. In the past 20 years, WAAMA has been adhering to the tenet of "promoting abacus culture, strengthening exchanges and cooperation, promoting the spread and development of abacus and mental arithmetic in the world, focusing on giving full play to the role of abacus and mental arithmetic education in enlightening wisdom and benefiting mankind". Its organizational strength has been growing steadily, and several international competitions and academic exchanges have been held with high standards and quality, and fruitful results have been achieved. My colleagues have been deeply engaged in the field of education, making the abacus intangible cultural heritage blossom and bear fruit all over the world, and making great contributions to the development of local education. 20 years later, when we look back on our achievements and look forward to the future, we are full of ambition and affection. As an old Chinese saying goes, "a good plan can be made by pooling the wisdom of all, and a great cause can be achieved by uniting the strength of all". I hope that all directors and member representatives can take the 20th anniversary of the founding of WAAMA as an opportunity to further deepen the communication with WAAMA, adhere to innovative open and shared development, and strive to cultivate opportunities in the crisis and open up new horizon, so that the WAAMA can better contribute to the long-term development of its member units. We believe that as long as we work together and help each other, even if we are separated by thousands of rivers and mountains, we will surely be able to achieve a better tomorrow for the cause of abacus and mental arithmetic!