Archive for January, 2012

Too Much Math Is a Bad Thing for Young Minds

Taking Calculus senior year in high school officially turned me off to math, as it probably does for many high schoolers.  While the practicality and logical application of other math subjects is obvious, Calculus is just too advanced for practical application.  While it’s great for future math majors, its complexity and disconnect with the real world make it off-putting.  In fact it could be argued that forcing teens to take advanced math is partially to blame for our crisis with STEM.

Basic math is critical for survival; that was true long ago and it certainly still holds true today.  Even the most basic activities in the home in some way or another intersect with basic math.  Whether it’s your printer telling you that your ink cartridge has just one-quarter left to go, or your attempt at filling out a bank deposit slip for several checks you received, it’s critical that you understand basic math to carry on.

Perhaps if high school and even college classes were most focused on the practical application of concepts in the real world, or even based more around current events, students would be more likely to comprehend and apply what they are learning.  Generally speaking the education system (at least in the US) is broken, primarily because it’s taking too long to evolve.

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One Plus One Equals Two .. Or Does It?

The logic of math is something people like to believe in to feel secure, as are our understandings or leanings on any science. As humans we need something to believe in or base our actions on, but in reality any science is based on assumption & progressed by logic, therefore there is no possible way of it being correct as much as we would like to thing it is. All our moral beliefs, our understanding of right or wrong is again based on assumption or logic, while growing up within society we accept base assumptions & we progress on them using logic & we make conclusions of our set of rights or wrongs, again based on some initial assumption. The most “progressed” of us that think they have developed super human skills know that as much as it hurts we are still psychologically attached to some given assumptions. If you progress beyond what you think is possible, you’ll easily lie, cheat, kill, have no sense of “human” right or wrong, basically do whatever you wish you did without giving it a second thought. This is weirdly very close to being a sociopath. That said, even a sociopath is attached to some basic core assumptions, there isn’t a psychological freedom from some core beliefs, notions, whole entity. Even a complete insane sociopath views himself or herself as a part of something bigger, as a particle within many particles.

As human beings we always try to progress, we use science, arts or other forms of mental or physical activities to develop something that we don’t know what it is; we teach, we learn, we draw conclusions, yet the sheer reality is that our most perfect state is when we first appear on the globe as a new born. Analyzing newborns’ minds will most likely answer all the questions we have.

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Mathematics and Play – Important Components in a Childs Development.


From the ancient Greeks to current, modern societies, mathematics has always been regarded as vital to our understanding of the world around us.

As such maths features heavily in a child’s development and education, from a very young age.   Integrating maths and play is often the initial starting point for this.  This can be noted in playful interactive books in schools, in board games such as snakes and ladders, as well as in other forms such as hopscotch and numbered graphics in wet pour surfaces in playgrounds up and down the country.

Mathematics is vital in many modern industries, none less so than computing and the internet.   The famous British mathematician Turing is regarded as one of the founders of modern computers that are now commonplace.

So without maths, what would the world around us really be like?

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It’s All in Numbers: What Would the HealthCare Be Like Without Math

Let’s face it, math has a major role in every aspect of our life. Take even arts like music, music meters. tempos are all again based on math. Healthcare is not an exception, moreover healthcare studies are all statistically based, so yet again, math is a major link.

The research, published in Diabetes Care, recorded the dietary habits of 71,346 female nurses ages 38-63 years for 18 years, with contact every four years. None of the group initially had diabetes, heart disease, or cancer.

UK IP proxy

The results of eating three servings of fruit and green vegetables a day was not associated with any increase in diabetes. Instead, eating whole fruit was associated with a significant reduction in risk of the disease. Eating one green vegetable a day also statistically lowered diabetes risk. However, women who increased fruit intake by means of fruit juices had a higher incidence of DM.

Based on mathematical ratios & statistic we conclude that eating vegetables and generally eating less high cholesterol foods reduces the risk of heart disease. New research has shown that women who eat whole fruit instead of drinking fruit juice are less likely to develop type 2 diabetes. Women who include whole fruit in their diets rather than fruit juice may reduce their risk of developing type 2 diabetes, according to a multi-site study.

The outcomes and conclusions are interesting, but leave many questions. For instance, diabetics are known to have a sweet tooth. Consuming fruit juice could have been a result of a craving for something sweet  that preceded the dietary manifestation. Juices are concentrated and have higher glucose content. The ingestion of leafy greens and whole fruit suggests those nurses probably didn’t have high-fat diets, or have other habits that would increase diabetes risk, like smoking. I’d be curious to know about the other foods that made up the diets of those with and without the diagnosis of diabetes through the study period.

Also, were those consuming juice overweight? Overweight can contribute to developing diabetes.

How do we calculate BMI? YOU GOT IT! MATH!! This is what we need to understand, every little particle of our organism can have a mathematical view, every single thing we do during our daily life has a mathematical interpretation. Sure, we don’t like to view it that way, but it is what it is.

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Potential Renal Acid Load Calculation

The formula to calculate the Potential Renal Acid Load of a foodstuff, devised by Thomas Remer, Fredrich Manz (see Potential renal acid load of foods and its influence on urine pH), is below.

formula to calculate Potential Renal Acid Load
This is an important calculation as it helps us to establish the acid/base load of the foods we consume. An acid or alkaline diet is not the only indicator of health. However, if one’s diet is too acidic, this can lead to long-term health consequences. As an example, osteoporosis, is in large part caused by a condition known as metabolic acidosis – too much acid in the body. Diet plays a key nutritional role.

The mathematics of PRAL are plain to see. What is possibly more confusing is knowing what different PRAL values mean. Let us now turn to this. A value of zero is neutral. Therefore this would be neither an acidic or base effect upon the human body. Oils and fats typically have values very close to zero.

Positive values tell us that a food is acidifying to the human body. Meats and grains produce positive PRAL values.

Negative values indicate that a food has a base (alkaline) forming effect on the human body. Fruits and vegetables produce negative PRAL values.

PRAL is not the only indicator of a healthy diet. The formula is beneficial nevertheless. It codifies preciesly why particular foods do, or do not, have acid/base effects upon the human body.


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How Math is Used in Hair Salons

Growing up, it’s easy for a lot of kids to want to blow off mathematics — after all, for many it doesn’t seem like a fun or engaging subject.  Many teachers find themselves looking for unique and interesting ways to teach math to their students in a way that is memorable and also engages them in the learning process.

One such teacher, Jennifer Meale, while applying her favorite hair care product, mira hair oil, had the idea to teach math to her middle school students by taking them on a field trip to a local salon.  What could have been a mundane lecture about geometry turned into a fascinating display of layered hair cuts, bold hair colors, and the finances of running a hair salon.  Think about it — hair stylists must use certain angles to cut hair layers to perfection and just the right ratio of hair color and developer to create the best color for their clients.  The finances of running a hair salon also involves myriad math skills, all of which are excellent learning opportunities for students.

If you’re a teacher, consider using the hair salon model for your students’ mathematics education.  It’s sure to be a fun experience for all involved!

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Basic Math Is Surprisingly Important

I never got to the real advanced math classes in school. In fact the last math class I ever took in college would have seen me failing if it weren’t for a good friend who tutored me enough so that I could pass. But I always was good at adding, subtracting, dividing, and understanding the relationships between numbers. In other words, I am very good at simple math or everyday math that really can come in handy.

The truth is that I might have had to file for unemployment sometime in my life if it weren’t for my basic math abilities. The reason for this is that most of the jobs I have had required me to be able to do simple math quickly in my head.

Straight out of college I started playing poker and although not many people realize it, you need math skills to be good at it. While there is a big luck factor, the player who can get his money into the pot with a mathematical advantage the most will stand the best chance of winning over the long run. Good poker players are often good at math and they might not even know they are using it.

One of the first “real” jobs I ever had was a being a bank teller. You don’t need to know algebra or anything like that but you do need to know how to count and give change. You can deal with a lot of money over the course of a day and balancing at night was real scary at first. If you don’t balance then you won’t last long as a teller, that is for sure.

My next job was one where I went to different companies and looked through their books hoping to recover money for them. Again, you need to be real good at simple math for this because you need to be able to quickly identify instances where they might have overpaid or not taken enough discount. You have to be quick on your feet with addition and multiplication and you need to be able to easily identify numbers on a page that might be out of whack and don’t look right.

So, there you have it. My first three jobs in life all had a math component and I am glad I was able to learn the basics in school. Kids always wonder and ask why they need to be learning math because they think they will never need it later in life. The truth is though, that you never really know when something you learn in high school or college will be useful to you down the road.


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Maths Student Would Appreciate Better Access To Maths Research

My son is studying at Warwick University which is generally considered to be the best university in the UK for mathematics. Maths is not his subject, but he has hooked up with a girl who is a maths student and in the past she has remarked about that lack of good sources on the internet where she can find publications on mathematics. Fortunately she has access to a first class library on campus, but it would be much more convenient to open her laptop and find what she needs. As mentioned elsewhere on this page, Google treats a mathematics page as just another page on the web, which I suppose is understandable, but if papers could be accessed from one central point, how much more convenient that would be. So well done to the authors of this website.

My son is studying accountancy, which is very useful as I have a business selling gifts showing the customer’s family crest and he does my books for me, reducing the company tax bill by quite a tidy sum. I started my family crests business relatively late in life. I have always been interested in heraldry, so researching customers’ family crests is a pleasure rather than a chore; not something I could say about the subject of mathematics!

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Real World Math Application

In my high school and college careers there was many times in which I questioned the value of math in my life. Truth be told I did not realize all the real world applications that I would use Math for. In this article we are going to talk about some great real world examples that help students understand the importance of learning about math. Whether you are trying to calculate a mortgage when buying St George Real Estate or a car math can make this possible.

The first way that math applies to the real world will be in your job. Many of today’s occupations rely on some sort of math to prove value. For example within the marketing field you will need to show value for the work you have completed. Therefore you will need to use math to demonstrate this value or you might be out of a job. This proving of value is also important because as you show what money you have made for your company you become more important. Being more important within the work place when ensure you make more money.

The next way in which math is very important within the real world is personal finance. When you are living you will have expenses. You need to make sure your expenses do not out pace what you are earning. This simple example demonstrates the value of simple math and budgeting. With math you will be able to find your way in the real world and earn more money.

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Math Is The Universal Language Of All!

It is true; mathematics is the universal language that pretty much governs the entire universe and everything we know as human beings.  Given is complexity there are very few people who truly understand the complex nature of the mathematical language.  I for one am not in that elite few, albeit I wish I was, I was one of those students who struggled greatly with the subject and took advantage of the computer and calculator age to aide me in anything having to do with math.

We will however see no future technological achievements without continuing to study and become better at math.  Never will we create hyper drives to travel to other star systems without math, or never will we be able to even solve the debt relief crisis without advanced math.  The bottom line is it is probably the single most important subject you can learn and try to master while studying in school.

Even basic math is a pure necessity for everyday living for things such as balancing a checkbook, working a register, even the lowlifes of the underworld need to understand at least basic math to ensure they are getting what they are due.  So it is without a shadow of a doubt the one true universal language not only of our world but the entire universe; any space faring civilization would need to understand math on an intimidate level that us humans cannot even fathom at this time.

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