Pro­gram looks at real-world maths uses

Pilbara News - - News - Shan­non Beat­tie

Stu­dents at Kar­ratha Se­nior High School have been en­cour­aged to keep study­ing maths to help ben­e­fit their fu­tures.

Choose Maths is a na­tional project be­tween the Aus­tralian Math­e­mat­i­cal Sciences In­sti­tute and BHP Foun­da­tion which aims to fos­ter links be­tween maths learn­ing and real-world ap­pli­ca­tion.

More than 160 Year 10 stu­dents par­tic­i­pated in the project, which fea­tured a speed-dat­ing ses­sion in which lo­cal in­dus­try cham­pi­ons were paired with stu­dents to ex­en­rolled plore re­gional op­por­tu­ni­ties with maths. KSHS head of math­e­mat­ics Ryan Ansell said Choose Maths started as a way to en­gage girls in math­e­mat­ics.

“Our re­gional cham­pi­ons are fe­males — girls in class may not be so en­gaged in maths, but they can look up to peo­ple in in­dus­try and re­alise it’s re­ally im­por­tant,” he said.

“We value maths and want to pro­mote it so we worked with AMSI to cre­ate a day to en­gage all stu­dents in maths.”

Only 6.9 per cent of Year 12 girls and 13 per cent of Year 12 boys in ad­vanced math­e­mat­ics na­tion­ally in 2016, and KSHS hopes to chal­lenge the per­cep­tion of the sub­ject and fo­cus on the op­por­tu­ni­ties it opens for young peo­ple.

Phar­ma­cist and re­gional cham­pion Nikki Wig­more said stu­dents of­ten didn’t re­alise they needed maths, so it was im­por­tant for them to see its use in dif­fer­ent pro­fes­sions.

“They can see it in real life, that peo­ple ac­tu­ally do use it ev­ery day and it has rel­e­vance to their fu­tures — hope­fully they’ll see that there is a rea­son for them to be study­ing it,” she said.

Pic­ture: Shan­non Beat­tie

Jas­mine Dang, 16, Kayla May, 16, phar­ma­cist and Kar­ratha Se­nior High School re­gional cham­pion Nikki Wig­more and Kyla Ashard, 16.

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