Why Learn Math?
Try these responses when your child asks "Why should I learn math?"
Why Learn Math?
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Even children who are good at math can sometimes challenge a parent, asking "Why should I study math?" The response "...because I say so," is a bit flip and not particularly convincing. Parents need to be ready with quick and sound responses. Towards that end, here are several variations of the question "Why should I learn math?" along with possible answers.
Answer 1: Because it grows your brain.
Employers don't want workers with little tiny brains, they want workers with great big brains. Math teaches you reasoning skills that make you smarter.
Answer 2: Because math is used in the family and in many careers.
In the family it is used for: budgeting, cooking, sewing, grocery shopping, woodworking and homeschooling.
Well-paying professions that use math include: scientists, engineers, economists, bankers, stock brokers, accountants, businessmen, doctors, and politicians, to name a few.
Trades that use math include: carpenter, electrician, cook, brick-layer, landscaper, and seamstress.
Answer 3: Because math is one of the languages through which we understand the beauty of God's world.
Math is used in science to describe how the world around us works. Knowing this gives us greater appreciation for God's design.
Answer 1: Because the student who knows his math facts can do simple problems much faster that the student with a calculator. This can be demonstrated by a simple experiment:
On a blank sheet of paper, write down a math quiz consisting of these five math problems (or equivalent):
Find someone good at the math facts, and time him taking this quiz two different ways: first without a calculator, then by punching the numbers into a calculator before writing down the answers. When I did this experiment with my son, we found that it took him three to four times longer to solve the problems with a calculator than from memory. Thus, students who know the math facts have a clear advantage. This pays off in many areas, including standardized tests where time is important. Although calculators are essential for more difficult problems, they are no substitute for knowing the basic math facts.
Answer 2: Because when you get to algebra, many problems require a thorough knowledge of the math facts. Factoring polynomials, for example, requires lots of addition and multiplication--the student who doesn't know his math facts will be lost. (What are polynomials? They are used for complex calculations, for example: describing the path of a cannonball.)
Answer 1: People use percentages to estimate sales tax on a purchase, and to compute restaurant tips. Percentages are also used in figuring income taxes and many other calculations.
Answer 1: Algebra is a building block for the math used by scientists, engineers, economists, bankers, stock brokers, accountants, businessmen, and doctors.