PROF. Promise Mebine, the Director/Chief Executive, National Mathematical Centre (NMC), has called on mathematics stakeholders to intensify efforts towards ensuring quality teaching and learning of the subject in schools.
Mebine made the call in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Tuesday in Abuja in commemoration of the International Day of Mathematics (IDM).
He says that Mathematics has proven to be a powerful tool for understanding the environment.
“It helps us to understand patterns, quantify relationships, predict the future, predict profit, and study exponential growth and decay (the rate at which things grow and die) within the context of population growth,” Mebine said.
According to him, mathematics is incredibly important in human lives and is used in many professions.
“Every sane person does and uses mathematics, though many do not realise that. The theme for this year’s celebration is “Mathematics for Everyone”.
“Truly, Mathematics is for everyone, though many people developed a phobia for it because of the general belief that it is abstract and difficult.
“It is a statement of fact that mathematics is incredibly important in human lives and is used in many professions. Every sane person does and uses Mathematics, though many don’t realise that,” Mebine
He said Mathematics is involved when people cross the road too.
“For instance, when you want to cross a road and there is an oncoming vehicle, what do you do? You take the following into consideration: estimate the distance between you and the vehicle.
“The speed of the on-coming vehicle, the time it will take the vehicle to reach your crossing line and the time it will take you to cross. All these must be calculated and analysed, though mentally before crossing the road.
“A good cook who wants to prepare food must take into consideration the number of people to be fed, the quantity of what he or she wants to cook, the size of the pot to use, and quantities of ingredients and water to make food tasty,” Mebine said.
The director said these were some of the things people do in their everyday life without knowing they were practising mathematics.
He said that the importance of mathematics in everyone’s life cannot be over-emphasized, hence the need to make IDM worth looking forward to every year in the country.
Mebine said for this to be achieved, the celebration should not be left in the hand of NMC and a few organisations but all lovers and users of mathematics should include it in their annual programme.
March 14 of every year is set aside for all countries of the world to participate in the celebration of the beauty and importance of mathematics and its essential role in everyone’s life. (NAN)