# The numbers game

WITHOUT numbers, how would it be possible to count the total of students in the class, dollars in the pocket, runs in a cricket match or days in a week?

Numbers are everywhere in daily life. They have become an indispensable part our world.

Can you imagine not having numbers? Look around you. They are everywhere.

Types of numbers

The idea of numbers dates back to early civilisations where societies had some system of counting as a way to organise and keep track of things as they were used up, added to or traded.

With the invention of writing, symbols were used to represent the numbers. Different methods of representing numeric symbols were invented and the various strands of mathematics developed.

There are many different types of numbers, each of which plays an important role within both mathematics and our world.

The most common types of numbers you explore through mathematics are: natural numbers: These are the first numbers you learn about, also known as counting numbers.

These are numbers used primarily for counting and ordering eg: 3

Integers. These are whole numbers, including negative number values eg: -2;-1; 0; 1; 2;

prime numbers: natural numbers greater than 1 that can be

divided by only 1 and itself (eg, 43)

composite numbers: any number having three or more factors/divisors

rational numbers: numbers that can be expressed as the ratio of two integers eg: ½ also referred to as fractions. All rational numbers have a decimal equivalent. Eg 0.5

irrational numbers: numbers that cannot be expressed as simple fractions eg, pi

real numbers: All the rational plus all the irrational numbers.

infinite number: is one that is greater than all other numbers, the largest of all numbers, a limitless quantity Ordinal numbers: denote order in a set by describing the position eg: third