Coming to Know, so much more than “Math”.

This past weekend a phenomenal groups of mathematics educators, researchers and learners met at the BIRS research station, Banff, Alberta for the annual Math Fair Retreat. I share here thoughts and reflections the weekend spawned…..

Traditional cultures, traditional arts, traditional ways of “knowing” ourselves and the world are highly spatial, highly visual and can be used to build, adapt, refine spatial reasoning skills that improve our abilities to reason and think. Why are we not immersing ourselves in the experiences, then noting the “math” connections as they become apparent. Why do we start from “math” first as though the knowing of mathematics is more important than the Coming to Know…. 

Read the following excerpt that describes the traditional art of bark biting and tell me again about what mathematics and knowing mathematics entails???

As I was when I first heard an interview with a traditional bark biter, I am left breathless in wonder as I consider the incredible skill and knowledge involved in birch bark biting. This is mathematics in our world.

Another of my favourite topics is Knot Theory and for just a few brief moments I got to immerse myself back into the world of knots. Knots are opening the door to math, science pursuits never before dreamed possible. The world awaits and all you need literally is a shoestring!!

This summer we will re enter the world of spatial reasoning with a powerful look at INFOGRAPHICS and how we can use the appeal of the visual spatial temporal world to connect ALL students and ALL cultures to Literacy as Numeracy and Numeracy as Literacy. Ways of Knowing, Knowing Ways….