Mathematics and Numeracy
Mathematics and numeracy are vital components of everyday life and are intertwined within our natural world. Combined, they are used to solve problems, conceptualize how things work, describe why certain patterns appear in nature and to help us manage day to day activities. Mathematics can be used to explain the phenomena of our natural world and how the world around us is built while numeracy is the ability to confidently use mathematical skills to solve problems and contribute to society. While they work interchangeably, there are key differences within the two which will be discussed later in the essay. As a future educator, it is imperative that maths and numeracy are understood in a real-world context so that students
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While it is a much harder concept to define, it outlines the capability to choose and use mathematics in a broad range of contexts in society. Numeracy is the practice of mathematics, it outlines how we conceptualise maths and use it confidently at home, work and within the community. The term numeracy was first coined in 1959 in Britain, meaning that numeracy is quite a new concept, compared to mathematics, and it still evolving. For this reason, numeracy is hard to simply define because everyone has different interpretations of what it means and how it is used. Willis (1998) suggested that being numerate is about having the competence and disposition to meet the general demands of life at home, in paid work, and the participation in community and civil life. In this he addresses that to be numerate one must have the disposition to choose and use mathematical theories in specific contexts to solve problems. Hughes- Hallet (2001) define numeracy as recognising where maths can be used, choosing the appropriate mathematical tools, and being able to interpret the results. While the two definitions are quite different they both asses the importance of using maths in our day to day lives and choosing maths as a solution to a problem. In many professions, numeracy is relied on to be able to do a job, for example, a builder must have expert knowledge on geometry, measurement, and symmetry and have the disposition to apply this knowledge to their work. Geometry and symmetry are mathematical concepts that we see in building structures all around the world, and builders must be numerate to apply these skills to a project for it to function properly in society. The first goal set out by the Australian curriculum is to ensure ‘that every child leaving primary school should be numerate, and be able to read,

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