By: Rachel P. Geges
Mathematics Coordinator/CI Focal Person/Teacher 3
Real Elementary School, SDO Calamba City
It’s been a debate whether Mathematics and Numeracy are different, or they share something in common. Do they function that same or serve differently in the learning process of students.
According to Oxford dictionary, Mathematics is the abstract science of number, quantity and space. It may study in its own right or as it is applied to other discipline such as physics and engineering.
Others defined Mathematics as the study of the measurement, properties and relationship of quantities and sets, using number and symbols.
On the other hand, Oxford defined numeracy as a good basic knowledge of mathematics; the ability to understand and work with numbers standards of literacy. It is an individual’s ability to reason and apply numerical theory or concepts.
It is safe to say that being good in Mathematics as a subject in school doesn’t mean an individual is numerate. Its like reading and comprehension, a person can read letters, words and even sentences but fail to understand what the text is all about.
Mathematics is like the process and the way we read numbers, it teaches us on how to solve certain problems that requires standard operations and solution. But being numerate dictates the level on how to use those mathematical skills in real life and be apply to apply to make a reasonable decision.
For instance, it’s Monday morning and a student who are good in reading and telling time but fail to act upon seeing that its almost 7:00 in the morning, and he need to go to school we can say that he is good in math but not in numeracy.
Another example is like when we ride in an elevator where there’s certain number of capacities of passenger, and a person keep insisting to ride even the elevator alarm indicates a full load, hence, he doesn’t show his understanding on a simple Mathematics and apply to apply the concept of math like balance, greater than and others.
On the last note, numeracy shows what you learn on Math class and apply this in your everyday life. It sometimes reveals values of an individual that reflected on his action for every situation. You may already know that 1 plus 1 is two, but fail apply that knowledge in positive way, then it can be concluded that you are good in Math, as a subject, but your level of numeracy is low.