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Classroom Tools

The Abacus 

The abacus was used in ancient civilizations primarily for calculations of basic arithmetic, most likely by merchants or accountants. In schools today they are mainly used to teach arithmetic to young children, where they are used as a visual aid.


Abacus

The Protractor 

The protractor has been in use for so long now that its origin is unknown. They have been used in the past for such things as maps and navigation, and in classrooms since the beginning of the 20th century to teach geometry.



Protractor 
 
 

The Compass

An ancient tool used in math classrooms to draw circles and arcs, the compass was used mainly when studying geometry. Euclid uses a compass in his work ‘Elements of Geometry’ from 300 B.C. In the 18th century the compass was modified to have a pencil on one side (instead of just two legs), similar to the one students use now.
 

Compass


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