June 20, 2021

Mathematicians see their subject as “axis of scientific knowledge”


A student solves mathematical operations in an exercise book.  |  |  EFE

A student solves mathematical operations in an exercise book. | | EFE

Mathematics teachers see their subject as the fundamental axis of scientific and technological knowledge. The president of the Isaac Newton Canary Islands Society of Mathematics Teachers, Agar Arrocha Reyes, links mathematical thinking with the competences of a “critical and reflective” society. «They are the backbone of scientific and technological knowledge, they are essential in the development of a fair and equitable economic and social model, and they are essential for the efficient management of daily life, for understanding, analysis and drawing conclusions from of the information”.

After the approval of the Organic Law of Modification of the Organic Law of Education (Lomloe), the Ministry of Education works to change the educational system from the point of view of pedagogies and school curricula, that is, the form and content that adopt the renewed educational system. Some autonomous communities with competences in Education have launched pedagogical innovation projects in Compulsory Secondary Education (ESO) that merge subjects from the same area of ​​knowledge, such as Sciences.

In some of these initiatives, the subject of Mathematics has been merged with others such as Biology or Technology, with the rejection of teachers, who have been forced to expose the priority of teaching Mathematics as a single subject in the school curriculum. “Mathematics is a language and cannot be limited, as it is not the case with languages, to the knowledge of the subjects of the current curriculum”, Arrocha explains.

Communities

The president also recalls that each autonomous community has its definition quota “and that is where it will be seen what is the bet that each one makes to effectively achieve a boost, not only in the area of ​​Steam – Science, Technology, Engineering , Art and Mathematics–, but rather of a future social model, which does not reduce the presence or importance of mathematics. In the Canary Islands we also have that possibility, and so far that has never been the bet, we still have time for it to be so, “he explains.

In this sense, he insists that the subject is “an essential and essential pillar for the development and maintenance of social and natural balance and must be learned not only as a tool at the service of other disciplines but also for its own intrinsic value”, although appear “attractive” to students and the general public.

Arrocha relies on the statements of the president of the Spanish Mathematics Committee (Cemat), Alfonso Gordaliza, who pointed out that the subject “requires the development by the students of the capacity for abstraction, a logical reasoning that remains within the structure of mathematics and for which it is difficult to find correlations in other disciplines ».

Also in this context, the president of the Education Commission of the Royal Spanish Mathematical Society (RSME), Luis J. Rodríguez Muñiz, recalled that mathematics “conveys scientific language, I think we have enough arguments to consider them special.”

In any case, remember that «there are also other possibilities to articulate interdisciplinary and integrated work in the field of Steam, as well as to provide a managerial function to the existing figures in the organization of secondary schools that would benefit such work and the objective that it is pursued ».

Agar Arrocha understands that «significance in learning in general, and in mathematics in particular, continues to be the beacon that should guide the choice of methodological strategies that teachers must select so that students acquire such essential knowledge, not only for its use in daily life but for its preparation for the following educational stages, not in vain both the compulsory education and the Baccalaureate have a propaedeutic value ».

In the president’s opinion, development “cannot be conceived” without a better-prepared citizenry with good knowledge of the subject. «Not everything is Mathematics, Science and Technology, but it is also Mathematics, Science and Technology. We cannot continue to use the justification for visible utility in the face of a future for which we do not know what the essential necessary skills will be, but which already allows us to glimpse the fact that mathematical competencies are going to play a leading role ”, he argues.

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