Don't like math? Adults need math to succeed in life.
One desirable personal trait, that is partly instinct, is the ability to measure.
But not only with a ruler or tape measure. Measuring is a part of life that cannot be avoided .
For hundreds of years, sailors have measured their location on the planet, not by GPS, but by sextants and other devices that used the location of the sun or the stars in relation to the horizon. (See picture)
Measuring can be done in hard numbers, as in the length of a board for a porch floor, but some measurements are estimated, like the distance from the basket when playing hoops. A pinch of salt is estimated, while medicine should be exactly measured, eh?
Medicine, baking, sports and carpentry all require measuring.
Parenting has a lot of measuring.
Feet are measured for shoes, babies’ cries are measured to see if the child is hurt, sad or angry. Noses are counted at birthday parties to be sure everyone that came to the birthday party is still there.
Kids with braces, look in the mirror and calculate their tooth movement.
People with social sites count ‘likes’.
Roller coaster operators and gym coaches count laps.
Farmers estimate the amount rain coming down, while on the tractor, to see how much longer they can stay in the field.
Boys with cars estimate how many miles they can drive until they run out of gas.
Girls estimate how many outfits they need for a weekend at a friend’s house.
Weddings and Olympic events require SO much measuring.
Imagine the advance-measuring (called 'engineering') it takes to build a rocket ship.
Estimating the cost of traffic tickets and insurance increases has prevented many a speeding ticket.
Solving a problem can’t be done without measuring.
In fact, most problems can’t be understood without some form of measuring.
You and your friend walk to the store so you can buy gum.
You measure the price. It’s $1.19.
You measure your money. It’s $1.00.
You calculate the difference. It’s 19 cents.
You conclude you don’t have enough money.
Your buddy has been watching you; you measure the amount of sympathy on his face.
You estimate that he is approachable, so you ask to borrow a quarter.
He says 'Yes' and gives you a quarter.
You buy the gum and estimate that you should share,
You offer him a piece, he takes it.
Trying to reduce your debt, you ask, “Now how much do I owe you?”
He measures that he has the advantage and says, “Twenty-five cents”.
See how much measuring was done for one pack of gum, eh?
Food recipes and grilling times are forms of measuring,
So is comparing the rifling on bullet samples to see if a certain gun was used to commit a certain crime.
Our lives are full of measuring; we just use math to simplify the process.
Yes, math simplifies life, because it gives firm measurements to abstract factors.
Listen young friend, everything, every activity, and everyone you think is cool, is saturated in measurements,
and if you develop your ability, and your instinct to measure, you will have a better life.
Knowing if you’re in trouble by your adult’s tone of voice is a form of measuring.
Knowing if your car is breaking down by the bad sounds it is making, is a form of measuring.
Listening to how close the lightening is, by the speed of the thunder, is a form of measuring.
You are already doing this stuff.
Now fine-tune it, by understanding that most measurements work better with numbers.
This is why you have math class.
Eric J Rose