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the_hill1962
Advanced Member

USA
1468 Posts

Posted - 09/03/2007 :  07:47:41  Show Profile
Does anyone feel like they use "math" every day (daily "life") (excluding your job/profession/hobby)? I am not referencing basic arithmetic. It is the use of more advanced concepts that I am interested in.
Once in a while I use it, but I suppose that is because I understand and like "math".
The TV show NUM3ERS claims that "we all use math everyday". This show is about using real advanced math. I find that I don't even use simple arithmetic some days. So, is this another false statement coming from hollywood?
I am a math teacher and would like to compose a list of REAL 'everyday' mathematics.
I mentioned that I use it once in a while, so I will start off the list of what I 'use' almost everyday.
I hope that we get a huge list going here. Of course, someone may have a website that contains what I would like but I have found that most "lists" go off the into things that really aren't "everyday" sort of things or just pertain to arithmetic. If someone knows a good website, please share. Hopefully there will be some good additions to the list below:
1. d=rt
2. mpg
3. a+b=c

Edited by - the_hill1962 on 09/04/2007 12:58:23
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Mrspi
Advanced Member

USA
998 Posts

Posted - 09/03/2007 :  10:25:34  Show Profile
I'm a quilter, and I use geometry quite often in planning the design of quilt blocks, and for finding shortcuts for constructing frequently-used pieces like "half-square" or "quarter-square" blocks constructed of triangles without actually CUTTING a jillion tiny triangles. Of course, one must also determine the correct amount of fabric to purchase, which requires math as well.

One complaint I frequently hear from other quilters is that they're terrified of the math involved!
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the_hill1962
Advanced Member

USA
1468 Posts

Posted - 09/03/2007 :  13:59:39  Show Profile
Thanks for the reply David and Mrspi. Yes, I realize that if a person likes math, he/she will find ways to use it in their hobby. Probably those that understand math will have hobbies that incorporate the use of math anyway. However, I would like to limit the list to common daily tasks.
David, do you really believe that a (math) person has a great advantage in ANY profession or hobby? There are lots of professions and hobbies that need no math (and even quite a few that don't need arithmetic)? In any case, I would like to exclude professions and hobbies from the list.
quote:
Originally posted by David

The point is to show that one has a great advantage in ANY profession or hobby if one is aware both of the theoretical background and the practice. The more tools available in the toolbox, the easier the task.


Mrspi, I have a friend that likes to quilt also. I asked her to make something for me that included a design. She needed my help in how to do it. Alas, she has not finished what I wanted (from two years ago) and has resumed to making baby blankets but she insists that she will get back to mine after finishing the blankets. However, I am thinking that before she finishes, there will be another friend or relative needing a baby blanket...
quote:
Originally posted by Mrspi

One complaint I frequently hear from other quilters is that they're terrified of the math involved!


Edited by - the_hill1962 on 09/03/2007 14:23:43
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skeeter
Advanced Member

USA
5634 Posts

Posted - 09/03/2007 :  14:39:48  Show Profile
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sahsjing
Advanced Member

USA
2399 Posts

Posted - 09/03/2007 :  19:53:06  Show Profile
Gas Price

You know the gas price at a gas station 5 miles further is generally 5 cents/gal cheaper than at the gas station close to your house. How much can you save to go to the further station? Assume you drive your car with the gas consumption of 25 miles/gal.
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Subhotosh Khan
Advanced Member

USA
9117 Posts

Posted - 09/03/2007 :  21:37:41  Show Profile
quote:
Originally posted by the_hill1962

Does anyone feel like they use "math" every day (daily "life") (excluding your job/profession/hobby)?

I don't USE literature, music, art, etc. during my mundane existence. However, to bring any excitement to life - we need to have higher thoughts - mathematics is one of those.


Edited by - Subhotosh Khan on 09/03/2007 21:38:39
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the_hill1962
Advanced Member

USA
1468 Posts

Posted - 09/04/2007 :  08:12:56  Show Profile
skeeter: Good cartoon! Adding humor like that to the classroom is usally beneficial. Some students get turned off by it, though. The "weak" math students just resign to the punchline and agree that they wouldn't care how fast they were going. Has anyone used the CBL probes that hook up to the TI graphing calculators? The cartoon sounds like a good application for them.
David: I just have "math person" stuck in my head. Something one person is interested in may not be what another person is interested in. Yes, knowing some music theory is beneficial to you. I find it interesting to know that sound is just wave that travels through the air. I like the material on the page
http://members.cox.net/mathmistakes/music.htm
sahsjing: EXCELLENT! This is exactly what I was looking for. It is very useful to be able to do this. It becomes very real when a person can figure out that the cost to drive 1 mile is over 10 cents. There are many people that drive less than a mile to work! Now, that is probably costing them quite a bit since mileage isn't very good for short trips. I walk to work.
Subhotosh Khan: Good analysis of "mundane existence". Flipping it around, why do most of the so-called 'retarded' people seem so happy and a few of the so-called 'intelligent' people have depression problems? It is the nature of human existence I guess. A person can use knowledge (or lack of knowledge) as either a postive or negative force. I visited a foreign country once and got the experience of being a person that couldn't read. It was not a bad experience but I don't know if I would want to be bagging groceries (or other jobs that require very little academic skills) for the rest of my life. However, if I never learned anything, I suppose that I would not know anything different. Bagging groceries would just be something that I would be good at and probably enjoy it.
I know, I am going off the deep end here... Just thoughts...

Edited by - the_hill1962 on 09/04/2007 08:24:33
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the_hill1962
Advanced Member

USA
1468 Posts

Posted - 09/10/2007 :  08:01:30  Show Profile
David, thanks for the sagacious reply. I agree, trying to keep all the words in "the" dictionary is necessary because there are people that study language and if words such as "dimidiate" suddenly never seemly existed, oh my, what would such people do? I am just glad that I only have to know how to use a very small percentage of the words in "the" (did you mean 'abridged' when you used the word "the" in your reply?) dictionary. I am not very proficient in the use of the English language (and much much less proficient in the use of other languages). Do I need to be? I was forced to take intermediate levels of subjects that I did not find necessary. It turned me off to even wanting to study them further. I failed a couple subjects in H.S. that are now required to graduate in most secondary schools. Maybe those subjects should have been required back then. I don't know if it would have made me hate those subjects even more (being forced to learn...) or if I would have suddenly came to the realization (after learning them) that, hey, this stuff is useful. Different people find different things useful. People who have taken advanced math courses find the beauty in math.
My question is, "should we funnel all students through Algebra2" and thereby forcing some less rigorous versions of the course so that all can pass it?
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the_hill1962
Advanced Member

USA
1468 Posts

Posted - 09/10/2007 :  08:06:15  Show Profile
Probably this whole topic should be in the Teacher Forum area. If I had taken a course in course in Blogging, I suppose I wouldn't have made the mistake...
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