Relating mathematics to questions that are relevant to many students can help address its image problem, argues Eugenia Cheng
16 November 2022
MATHEMATICS has an image problem: far too many people are put off it and conclude that the subject just isn’t for them. There are many issues, including the curriculum, standardised tests and constraints placed on teachers. But one of the biggest problems is how maths is presented, as cold and dry.
Attempts at “real-life” applications are often detached from our daily lives, such as arithmetic problems involving a ludicrous number of watermelons or using a differential equation to calculate how long a hypothetical cup of coffee will take to cool.
I have a different approach, which is to relate abstract …