Education news

Young and older people take part in Ireland's biggest maths event

Glenwood PS in north Belfast is one of many schools taking part in this year's Maths Week

SCHOOLS, colleges and universities are this week promoting the benefits of maths to pupils and the wider community.

Maths Week aims to promote a positive image of the subject and its applications in everyday life.

To date more than 322,000 people have registered across Ireland to participate in hundreds of events.

A host of events will take place across Northern Ireland with partners including Ulster University, Queen's University Belfast, Stranmillis University College, W5 and Armagh Planetarium.

In Derry, the Izak9 Maths in the City Mathquest at Foyleside Shopping Centre will feature a £500 prize. The Izak9 team has also organised Maths with no Borders and Maths in the Parish.

Maths presenters showcasing their work and skills locally include juggling scientist James Soper, clown Caroline Ainslie, Enigma and the Secret World of Codes expert James Grimes and educator and puzzle challenger Doug Buchanan.

Also taking part is Mark Saul, director of the Julia Robinson Festival of Maths who is teaming up with James Grimes at Queen's University on October 19.

On Saturday, October 20, Victoria Square in Belfast will host the free Maths in the City from 11am to 5pm.

Maths Week co-founder Sheila Donegan said it was important to give children the best possible start towards a successful future career in `stem' - science, technology, engineering and mathematics.

"Our children's futures are reliant on a firm grounding in basic mathematics, so it's important we promote a positive image and engage young people in maths-based activities in a fun learning environment from an early age," she said.

"Mathematics is fundamental to our everyday lives. In everything we do, a highly-skilled technician, engineer, designer, researcher or other professional with a solid mathematical background has played a crucial role; consider the software engineers who write code for the mobile apps we use or the latest technology in our smart devices. We should promote a positive culture of mathematics to encourage our young people to pursue high-skilled roles in the stem sector."

:: To register for Maths Week 2018 or for more information visit www.mathsweek.ie.

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