What is the reason why mathematics is taught in school?

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steveschoen eNotes educator| Certified Educator

I entirely agree with the logical thinking part, also.  For instance, you may get a job where you never have to do the quadratic formula.  But, you don't know that right now.  No one knows that while they are still in school.  But, the ability to use the quadratic formula to solve a problem, that's what's important.

Or, I describe it this way.  Why would a football player lift weights, like the bench press specifically?  If you consider it, no football player during a game is laying on their back and pushing 300+ pounds multiple times for their work.  Then, why do it?  Because it makes them stronger.  That increase in strength will make them a better football player.

So, why do math?  You are going to have problems out in the real world that you are going to have to solve, regardless of the field.  Math is the "bench press" right now.  "Get good" at solving problems now, then you will be even better at solving problems later in your own field.

Borys Shumyatskiy eNotes educator| Certified Educator


There are several reasons for this. The main reason,  I think, is to teach school kids logical thinking. Mathematics, as the most exact science, requires definitions, proofs and exact wording, which helps children to formulate their thoughts.

The second reason is that some mathematics is required in everyday life: counting items, money, lengths and so on. Understanding probability helps in making decisions (not only in casinos:).

The third reason is that many of sciences and disciplines requires math: physics, chemistry, engineering, economics and so on. So children who will obtain higher education will benefit from knowing math.