It’s been shown time and again that Americans aren’t as proficient in mathematics as many other countries in the world. Obviously, this is a growing problem, but it isn’t that big of a deal for individuals on a personal level. The bigger issue for Americans is that many people can barely do basic arithmetic – let alone algebra, geometry, and more advanced mathematics. At the very least, everyone should have a proficiency from arithmetic to algebra to geometry. For now, we’re going to take a general look at how anyone can improve their ability to do various types of math. A good majority of people could use this knowledge because math in many forms is extremely important on a day-to-day basis.
Why Math Is Important
We use math in some form every single day. Obviously, most people realize this without a problem. Buying groceries, cooking or baking, purchasing gasoline, and plenty of other things involve a little bit of arithmetic. However, students and professionals use all kinds of more advanced mathematics. Here’s a quick list of some of the different branches involved in mathematics:
Of course, most people don’t use much more than arithmetic each day, but others use calculus on a regular basis. Math – in some form or another – is around us at almost all moments of the day, so it’s pretty hard to ignore, especially if you aren’t that great at basic math. Luckily, there’s a tried and true method that can improve a person’s skills that cannot fail if you are diligent. Yes, I’m referring to practice, so…
Practice, Practice, Practice
The great thing about mathematics of all kinds is that it is pretty much the same thing for each process. With basic math problems, such as addition, the answers will always be the same. The process will always be the same (but answers different) when you’re working with algebraic equations or statistical problems. So then, math is pretty much the same processes over and over again with different numbers each time.
Unfortunately, people don’t find mathematics as simple as the repetition of the same processes over and over again. Many people just can’t seem to get the whole thing down to where they can comfortably do it without a huge hassle. Through practice though, anyone can become comfortable with math – from arithmetic to calculus. In fact, there isn’t much that beats simply practicing the material.
The first step to improving your mathematics skills is figuring out the processes that are necessary to get the problem solved. Hopefully, you know what you’re doing when it comes to arithmetic and basic math, so we’re going to skip that. Algebra comes next and it is pretty simple. For things like the quadratic formula and trinomials, you just need to look at steps to get the problem done. Start by understanding the variables and what gets done with them to get an answer for whatever the problem is. Undoubtedly, you can’t do actual math problems in real-life or in a class without understand how the problem gets solved.
Next, you’ll want to start doing some actual problems. Add in some numbers for those variables and start solving those mathematical questions. Knowing the process well beforehand will help you solve these equations now. On top of this, you’ll face far fewer issues and hassles once you understand the process. Solving the equation at this point should be simple. Just don’t get arrogant about your skills after a few problems; you should practice these processes on a regular basis, especially if you are in a class or need the mathematics for your job.
Here’s the simple method when it comes to practicing mathematical equations and mathematics in general:
1. For some equation or problem, set up the basic problem with variables and get the process down for dealing with just variables as opposed to actual numbers. Do this a few times until you can understand how it works.
2. Plug in real numbers and start doing these problems until you can get the right answer regularly.
3. Keep on practicing.
4. Repeat with other equations and formulas.
As you can tell, math isn’t all that difficult of a subject. The more advanced stuff get get pretty intimidating, but the majority of people won’t ever have to deal with it. For most people, arithmetic and some occasional algebra comes into place. Everyone should know the basics of math and be proficient in it because it is so commonly used each day. The best method to becoming better at math is practice. Obviously, you can’t be proficient with math if you don’t practice it on a regular basis. So then, improve your math skills and you’ll have no problem using it whenever the situation calls for it.