Five unexpected places where you’ll find maths for Years 5 and 6

From the oceans, to football, to magic tricks, maths plays a vital role in many unexpected places. Use these resources to explore the unexpected places where mathematics can be found and how it helps us make sense of the world.

Three books for children - Magical Mathematics, Football School and The Golden Ratio Three books for children - Magical Mathematics, Football School and The Golden Ratio

Reaching The Stars with Maths

Developed by Australian Mathematical Sciences Institute (AMSI). Speaker: Karlie Noon.

This is the inspiring story of Karlie Noon, the first Indigenous Australian in New South Wales to complete a double degree in maths and physics. She is currently researching for a Master’s in the field of Astrophysics. Her story reveals how as a mathematician, perseverance and curiosity are everything.

Football School Season 1: Where Football Explains the World

Written by Alex Bellos and Ben Lyttleton and illustrated by Spike Gerrell.

Do you live with a budding soccer superstar? Or are they just a massive fan of the sport? Then this series will be right up their alley! It’ll also help support mathematical skills and understanding at the same time. These true stories explore maths, science and history, accompanied by funny drawings and jokes that are bound to get your child thinking differently.

The Golden Ratio Coloring Book: And Other Mathematical Patterns Inspired by Nature and Art

Written and illustrated by Steve Richards.

Help your child relax and investigate mathematical ideas at the same time. This colouring-in book explores the ‘The Golden Ratio’ and other mathematical patterns that can be found in nature, art and architecture. The intersection of maths and art is also depicted through fractals, mandalas and tiles, all while colouring in.

How Big Is The Ocean?

Developed by TEDEd. Speaker: Scott Gass.

How do we measure the size of the ocean? Watching this video will help your child grapple with this very big question by investigating what “the ocean” is, looking at how much area it covers on the Earth’s surface (hint: a LOT), and talking about how much of the planet’s life it contains. For any flourishing marine biologists, environmental scientists, statisticians, nature-lovers or curious minds, this video shows how we use maths to help us explore and make sense of the world around us.

Magical Mathematics: The Mathematical Ideas That Animate Great Magic Tricks

Written by Persi Diaconis and Ron Graham, and foreword by Martin Gardner.

Magic powered by maths? Of course! Your child can learn a collection of card tricks from this book - and the mathematical ideas behind them. It has step-by-step instructions and ideas around enhancing their performance skills. There’s also an explanation of shuffling, the “Three-card-Monte” trick, and information about some magicians in history who have who used maths. A magician might never reveal the secrets behind his or her tricks, but here’s a hint: there’s often maths involved!

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