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Why Do I Like Mathematics?

Sometimes there is a problem in life that has no answer.

Perhaps a child has trouble learning. Perhaps someone becomes ill.

Perhaps there was love, but now there is conflict.

These problems are hard to solve.

There is no single answer.

Many people have opinions on what is the best answer. 

But in mathematics there is an answer: a single answer that is right.

There is no doubt; there is no argument; this answer is right.

If we ask, “What is five plus seven?” The answer is twelve.

If we ask, “How do you raise a child?”

The answer would depend on the child and the parents. 

Sometimes there is more than one way to reach an answer.

Imagine we want to find the area of a triangle.

The triangle has a right angle; the two sides surrounding the right angle are 20mm and 30mm.

The formula for the area of a triangle is one half of (base)(height).

We could consider the 20mm side as the base and 30 mm as the height.

We could consider the 30mm side as the base and the 20mm side as the height.

Both ways would produce the same answer.

The area is 300 square mm.

Alternatively, we could consider the base as the third side of the triangle and then we would have to draw a height and measure it.

The height would be neither 20 nor 30.

But still we would end with the same answer.

In math, the answer does not change. 

Another reason I like math is the way it brings order.

There can be a whole set of numbers or a whole set of measurements that mean nothing until mathematics organizes them into a pattern.

An average number can be found; graphs can be drawn; the spread of the numbers and probabilities of a certain number happening can be calculated.

This is like having a whole lot of dirty dishes after supper.

Applying math is like washing and sorting the dishes and putting them back into the cupboard. 

Math is a powerful tool.

Math should be our friend, and we will find more ways to use it to better our lives.

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