Essay on Speaking On The Language Of Mathematics

1618 Words Feb 2nd, 2016 null Page
Speaking in Numbers: The Language of Mathematics
Literacy is commonly used to refer to one’s ability to speak and decipher a language. However, it is possible to be literate in areas or skills besides traditional spoken language. For example, it is possible to be literate in sign language, or mathematics. After all, mathematics is defined by Dictionary.com as “the systematic treatment of magnitude, relationships between figures and forms, and relations between quantities expressed symbolically.” Language, on the other hand, is defined by Dictionary.com as “any system of formalized symbols, signs, sounds, gestures, or the like used or conceived as a means of communicating thought, emotion, etc.” As mathematics is a system of symbols, it can be considered a language and literacy can be developed in it. “I’m bad at math” is a refrain often heard in math classrooms that refers to mathematical illiteracy. Math is a language to be learned just as English or Spanish. Mathematics is a literacy or fluency I have cultured as I learned to speak it over many years in an academic setting. My earliest memory of math would be from kindergarten and first grade when my teacher would have peers who finished worksheets early “race” on calculators. We would each have an old calculator with only a few functions such as addition, subtraction, multiplication and division. Then we would add 1 to our starting number as fast as possible. I remember being so focused that I would not want to tear my…

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