Thursday, January 29, 2015

Learning Math and Science - Genius Mind

 Do you think learning math and science is something alien from outer universe ? Do you struggle to solve complex mathematics or science problems? If you keep on adding questions there will be a lot to add on. Because even i have some of those problems in my mind.

I excelled in college and was able to get into the top engineering University in Sri Lanka. At present i am reading for my Masters Degree in Distributed computing in Europe which involve Science and Mathematics heavily.

If you read my post Want to Learn anythin faster was a spark to ignite my habit of learning. Often i was comfortable at Theoretical subjects which needed rote memorization or comprehension. I wanted to understand the reasons so anyone who suffers the same can be benefit of it.  Further there is a common misunderstanding that maths is hard and complex even before attempting to realize the beauty of it.

As Human beings we are computing machines. We can do lot of maths in our head to survive in this world. To measure the distance by contrasting with other objects, Cross a road safely without being hit by a vehicle and the list is endless..So then why we cannot do it in the class room?

I often find the way we approach math and science is wrong. There are several observations that i have made why we think maths is complex.

1) If we relate a story to a problem and try to solve it will be easier than denoting it with x,y or any other mathematical notation. When we have a story we have solid mapping of the problems in our mind so understanding a problem and working towards a solution makes more realistic. Good mathematicians or scientists create problems more vivid in their minds. They live in it as real worlds. Symbols are just notation to express what they understood in common language.

2) In classroom or tests we try to rote memorize concepts. Maths and science is super easy when you understand the fundamentals about it. You need to feel or live with the concepts to solve problems. learning an equation will not give you the ability to solve problems unless it is just a substitution.
If you clearly observe an equation, it is a complete story. It is a story of how incidents of left side will come to a common agreement on your right hand side.

3) Connect what you learn with what you know. Our brain is structured as a web. If you do not want to lose newly learnt concepts you have to link and bind with what you know to avoid loosing them. Isolated memory islands disappears soon. Try to relate to whatever the concept you have really understood and try to construct on top of that. If you find anything hard at once try it repeatably in different ways but always have a break. Our brain needs to digest and it takes time to assimilate.

I am still researching and try to apply those concepts in practice to see how they work in real world. But it has been producing interesting results so far. I find myself learning more complex math or science problem than before as i changed the approach.

I am currently reading this book which is an excellent resource for who wants to develop a "mind for numbers". Happy learning.

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