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Maths has been taught in most UK schools in much the same way for a few decades. The situation is the same in lots of developed countries, sure there have been tweaks to teaching methods and curriculum changes but the main focus is pretty much the same.
Maths can be an unappealing subject for many students, it’s not instantly exciting and the prospects of well paid jobs seems unlikely. Of course, we know that it is not the case – the level of your maths education has a huge connection to future income potential. Many countries appreciate a mathematical education, getting a US visa is actually easier if you have maths qualification for example. Check out what is available in British Universities you can even take some of the online courses but you may need a British IP address like this.
There are increasing shortages though, Universities and employers are always complaining about the lack of mathematical candidates. Maths is a skill which is actually used in so many areas, there is a constant, unrelenting demand. Which is why many people think that we should change the way that maths is taught in our schools.
One of the main problems is that the need for certain maths skills has changed radically in the last few decades. Mathematics in schools is taught as a method of calculating – but do we need to do this anymore. Computers and quick methods of calculation are so readily available and easy to use.
For example although most of us were taught to calculate things in our head, how many of us even bother when we can just use our phone or the calculator on our desktop. Much of our further mathematics is done by computer too, processing power means that we can now no longer compete with computers when it comes to number crunching.
There has been a revolution in the use of maths but it has not been reflected in how we teach the subject.Technology means that complex models can be used very easily without days or months of associated number crunching. Computers can simply apply complicated numerical models and provide answers quickly. Calculation is pretty irrelevant, we can never compete with computers and why should we try.
what use is teaching children how to do long division manually, or why should they struggle with quadratic equations or mental arithmetic. Should we be teaching children maths in the context of the tools that are now available – that is of course computers.
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