Mathematics Seminar links numbers, biology

The Grand Rapids Community College Mathematics Department will host its next Mathematics Seminar on Thursday, March 26, 3:00-4:00 PM in 103 Cook. Our speaker will be GRCC Mathematics Instructor Andrea Hayes. The title and abstract for Andrea’s talk may be found below.

Whether you are a math maven or a math avoider, the question of how we learn mathematics (or anything else) is deep and difficult to answer. Are we hard-wired to “know” that 1 + 1 = 2, or do we learn it? Is such knowledge/learning unique to humans? This talk does not require a strong background in mathematics – all are welcome!

Pop and cookies will be served at 2:45 PM.

Number Sense: A Biological Look at How Our Minds Create Mathematics

How can an infant know that 1 plus 1 equals 2?  Why is it that, even after years of school, many of us still aren’t sure if 6 times 7 is 42 or 54?  How can animals without a language know some elementary arithmetic?  This talk will take a biological look at how the human mind creates mathematics and its implications on the teaching of mathematics.

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