This is a method in which the practical work is emphasised. The students work in the mathematics laboratory or even outside and verify mathematical truths. In this method, we proceed from concrete to abstract. By actually weighing and measuring lengths, areas, volumes, lines etc., each particular mathematical relation is found as a consequence of q number of such experiments.

In geometry, the pupils will draw different triangles in their note-books and by actual measurements, they will find that the sum of the angles of a triangle is equal to two right angles.

Suppose the students are to find the ratio of the circumference to the diameter of a circle i.e., they may take a number of circular discs. With the help of a measuring tape, they will measure the circumference and diameter of each particular disc. They will find that in each case, the ratio comes out to be the same and they will find this ratio.



1. This is a natural way of making discoveries.

2. It is psychological as it proceeds from concrete to abstract.

3. It is based on the principle of learning by doing.

4. It helps in clarifying fundamental concepts.


5. It makes the study of the subject interesting, especially to the small children.

6. It brings the application of mathematics into prominence.


This method has the following limitations:


1. This method cannot be applied to all topics of the subjects.

2. It does not develop thinking and reasoning power of the students. It imparts only factual information.

3. It is slow and time consuming.

4. This method tends to be an end in itself rather than a means to an end.


5. This method requires well-equipped mathematics laboratory which most of the schools do not possess. In the words of J.W.A. Young, “A room specially filled up with drawing experiments, suitable tables and desks, good black-boards and the apparatus necessary to perform the experiments of the course is really essential to the best success of the method.”

So we see laboratory method is useful for small children. This can help in clarifying mathematical concepts. But this is not sufficient. We are to develop mental faculties of the child. For this, we shall have to train the child in working at the abstract level. That is, we are to proceed from the concrete but we must gradually move to the abstract stage.