What is the point of learning math? At some point in our lives, we’ve all asked ourselves this question. We might not have comprehended the purpose of calculations, algebra, and equations as children or even as adults. Our teachers’ and parents’ responses to the above question, on the other hand, were either unmotivated or fabricated. Thus the aversion towards math is born in us. Our understanding of math as problem solving, numbers and useless subjects is overgrown. Math is more than simply numbers and calculations. It has been with us since the beginning of time, and it will continue to be with us until we are extinct. As Emmanuel Kant once said “A science is exact only insofar as it employs mathematics”. Math is the tool which solves problems of every other sciences, which is why it is called ‘Mother of all sciences’.
According to Anthony Persico who wrote ‘Why do I have to learn math?’, students often perceive learning math as a practice in memorizing formulas, theorems and procedures that have little or no application in real life. There lies the real problem. Mathematics is a way of thinking, and it is a product of the human mind primarily concerned with concepts that creates logical proof to everything around us. Its tool of reasoning provides insight into the power of the human mind, making it a very valuable discipline of school subjects throughout the world. Unfortunately most of the time the wrong method of teaching math fails to ignite the curiosity of students. Math is all about demonstrating rather than telling.
Why do we say that math is everywhere? We are surrounded by math, but we are unaware of it since the math around us is not the same as the math we studied in school or college. It may be unnoticeable at times, but you can always sense its presence if you pay attention. It is there in your house, the delicious dish your father cooked, or the beautiful dress you wear. You don’t go to a place without calculating the distance or the amount of gas you need to cover the distance. Math is also about relationships between different factors and how they function. We can also call them variables. Philosophically, those variables can be anything in our life. We can see that the value of these variables vary according to the situation and that determines ‘change’ in our lives. It can be either significant or insignificant. So math exists in every walk of our daily lives without us realizing it.
Math has also played an important role in the modernization of the world. We can see that vast volumes of data are ruling today’s world by studying, analysing, and interpreting the data. Experts applying mathematical knowledge allows people across the world to analyse and predict the business markets, population growth, health care, climate change and economy. Scientists are using mathematical models to eradicate deadly viruses like Ebola. Furthermore, studies show that in the 21st century jobs across the country and around the world require a higher degree of math fluency just like language fluency.
We were constantly told that math was important in order to earn good grades on exams, which would lead to a fantastic profession or career. However, more important is math’s role as a life skill that enables us to grow out of difficulties. It teaches us how to tackle an issue by enduring in the face of overwhelming odds and thinking critically. It turns a person into a creative and rational individual, enhancing brain functioning and enabling a smoother sustenance in a smarter world.