Five people who used maths to change the world for Years 3 and 4

Spark your child’s imagination with these incredible stories of trailblazers in architecture, space, and computer science… all of whom needed to use maths to help them change the world. In these five books you’ll find positive lessons about determination, collaboration, and the importance of working hard when going after your dreams.

The Boy Who Loved Math: The Improbable Life Of Paul Erdos

Written by Deborah Heiligman and illustrated by LeUyen Pham.

If your child’s always asking questions and likes to spend time pondering and imagining, they’ll likely find a kindred spirit in Paul Erdos. Curious about everything, including working out how many seconds someone has been alive, Paul travelled the globe and collaborated on a large number of problems, helping people around him better understand the world.

Grace Hopper: Queen Of Computer Code

Written by Laurie Wallmark and illustrated by Katy Wu.

As far as revolutionary people go, Grace Hopper is definitely an inspiring one. Digital illustrations and an easy-to-read story bring this picture book biography to life. Grace was an inventor, software tester, avid reader, naval leader, mentor, rule breaker and chance taker - and served an almost 50-year career in the navy where she used mathematics to shape computer science as we know it today.

On A Beam Of Light: A Story Of Albert Einstein

Written by Jennifer Berne and illustrated by Vladimir Radunsky.

Einstein reportedly said, “Imagination is more important than knowledge”. This sweet and inspiring picture book tells his story: A young boy with an endless fascination for the world around him, who overcomes challenges and refuses to give up on problems. The story of Einstein reminds us that sometimes, when you persevere with maths, you can use it to help change the world.

Counting On Katherine: How Katherine Johnson Saved Apollo 13

Written by Helaine Becker and illustrated by Dow Phumiruk.

Maths can help save lives, at least that’s part of Katherine Johnson’s story. The prominent NASA mathematician not only calculated the course of moon landings but averted many disasters using her skills and understanding. This powerful book will give your child a glimpse at Katherine’s love for the mathematics she used to change the world.

The World Is Not A Rectangle: A Portrait Of Architect Zaha Hadid

Written and illustrated by Jeanette Winter.

Imagine having a hand in creating buildings all over the world? This triumphant story of famed architect Zaha Hadid, details her childhood where she dreamt of one day designing her own cities, using her mathematical skills and knowledge to overcome obstacles to help her achieve her goals

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