When learning basic arithmetic there comes a time when every child stops using his or her fingers for counting. Instead, they start writing out answers by recalling the solutions they worked on from before. It is around the ages of 8-9 years that kids make the switch from fact retrieval to memory based problem solving. How well they are able to make this transition is likely an indicator of their future math achievement.
The shift comes more easily for some kids than for others. Scientists put youngsters into brain scanners to find out the rationale behind this. The children were tested for simple math problems as well as for a face to face test. It was seen that as the kids got older, their answers relied more on memory. Children start using certain brain regions, including the hippocampus and the prefrontal cortex. The brain reorganizes during normal development of cognitive skills and when something goes awry in the brains of children they face learning disabilities.
Read more on the study on foxnews.