Throughout history humans have been capable of sophisticated mathematical thinking to live, strive and survive, and many of the mathematical concepts invented by our early ancestors have evolved and are still used today. Did you know the binary number system used to power our digital technology was first employed in the Indus Valley over 4,000 years ago? Or that navigation systems like GPS use the mathematical concept of degrees that the Babylonians of Mesopotamia first began to use over 3,000 years ago. This book, The Amazing Beginnings of Mathematics explores the earliest origins of mathematics and their connections to the mathematics we use today. Whether you have a deep interest in mathematics and history or are someone who simply wonders, the engaging presentation and activities in this book will help you understand and appreciate the significant role of early civilisations in developing the concepts that underpin modern advances in mathematics. Also important to note that this book explores the non-European beginnings of mathematics – it is rare to find a mathematics history book that explores the contributions of the Aztec and Maya civilisation of Mesoamerica or the Inca of South America which this book does.
Often mathematics is seen as confusing, intimidating, or exclusive to ‘gifted’ individuals. However, the authors Calvin and Robert believe that everyone can do well in mathematics with the right learning approach using interesting materials. This book features over 60 activity pages that have been woven throughout the discussion and designed to be accessible to a wide audience, usually beginning with students in the primary grades. These activities will teach you to multiply like an ancient Egyptian or work out the area of a field just like the Aztecs did!