How To Make Math Easier and Fun
Application is key to making math fun. Why is math so boring? It is because traditional math homework doesn’t have any direct application to the real world. After you are done with this article you will love math. Period. So lets get started.
Math is just a bunch of numbers right? Wrong. Math is how we express quantities of reality. The current number symbols that represent these quantities of reality are stupid. Why are they stupid? They are stupid because they have no applicational meaning. Simply put we are going to re-engineer the number. Like these numbers (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 0) These number symbols are pathetic. What we need is something like this:
That’s right, Shapes. Shapes will be our new number symbol. Yes, I know it is a lot easier to write a 1 than it is to draw a square, but, that is why we have stencils. The new math numbering tool of the future is the stencil! Why are shapes better than traditional symbols? They are better because our brain sees in shapes. You do math all day all the time. Most of the time you are not aware of it though. When you cut pizza or pore a cup of water you are doing math. Your brain is calculating the quantity of pizza you are cutting by looking at the pizza as a whole and the other pieces of pizza. Poring water is even easier, but you are still doing math. When the water reaches a curtain level in the glass you realize it is almost full so you stop poring. By using shapes as the new number symbol you can learn quicker and also make math fun.
How Shape Numbers Work
Look at the figure on the right. Now look at all the petals all around the flower. These petals are shapes that show quantity. Count the petals on the flower. There are how many total petals on the flower? Quickly look at the figure on the bottom left and don’t peak at the top figure. How many petals are missing? Your brain will try to calculate how many petals are missing and it will. This is how your brain will calculate it:
First, when you open your eyes, they will see the flower and see if there are any petals on it. Once they see petals still on the flower they will see where there are a lack of petals. Your eyes will look at their surroundings and see that there is a void spot where there should be petals. They look at the whole flower, then zooms back to the remaining petals. Because the flower is a circle, you can count the petals that are directly opposite the missing petals. How many flower petals are missing?
What your brain just did is use math’s only law: Relative quantity. Yes, I know you haven’t heard of it before and that is because I made it up. But it is true. What you did is look at where the other petals were opposite the missing petals. Since you knew how many petals were on the opposite side you were able to calculate the missing petals. What you just did all in your head using shape numbers is a two step equation common in algebra # books. The problem is math homework is in stupid number symbols. What do you do? Well, you convert stupid number symbols into shape numbers symbols. And this is how you do it:
Get yourself a stencil with polygons and stars. We will start with another two step equation. Here it is:
6 = a/4 + 2
Now, take a deep breath. You are fine. Lets convert this. Take the equation answer 6, which I call the total number, and draw a star with six sides(this is when your stencil comes in handy). The star's six acute angles are your total number. You need the other numbers on the right side to equal the six angles on the left. Take the 2 on the right side and draw a diamond on top of the star so it looks something like this:
What you just did is subtract 2 from both sides of the equation. 6 - 2 = a/4 + 2 - 2. The diamond represents the quantity of 2, because it has two acute angles, the same as the star.
Just one more step. Our equation looks like this right now. 4 = a/4. Notice the star has four more acute angles than the diamond. This is how you can read equations in shape number form. What else does the right side need to equal the total number of the star? It needs four more acute angles. Take the four acute angles you see and multiply them by the bottom 4 in a/4. 4 multiplied by 4 is 16. And 16/4 is? Yep! 4! The answer was in your face the whole time. Because the denominator of the fraction was 4 you had to make the numerator equal 16 by multiplying 4 and 4. Now to give your answer in shape number form. All you have to do is draw this shape on top of the diamond and you're finished.
You might think it looks kinda crazy! Well let me explain what is going on first. Since the fraction had a denominator of 4, you had to have 16 in the numerator to equal 4, right? In order to get the needed 4 angles we had to draw 16 smaller angles. Every angle has 4 smaller angles on it, therefor the unknown value (a) is 16. The equation is now solved. By finding the total number on the right side we were able to find the unknown value. This is relative quantity is action.
Math is beautiful, and many people misuse it. Because we are dealing with shape numbers you can make numbers any kind of shape you want. That being said, you do need to have every angle be the same size. Instead of making pointed angles you could draw more curved lines. Look at nature, flowers, trees, animals, even humans. We all have shapes that define us. Although there are many different shapes, nature has a pattern. The pattern is a structure that allows all to live and function. This structure is called the golden mean. Everything you see the golden mean is there. The reason why I believe in shape numbers is because I see math not as a subject to memorize, but as beauty to explore.