Abstract / Synopsis
In this paper, I explore recreational mathematics from two perspectives. I first study how the concept appears in educational policy documents such as standards, syllabi, and curricula from a selection of countries to see if and in what way recreational mathematics can play a part in school mathematics. I find that recreational mathematics can be a central part, as in the case of India, but also completely invisible, as in the standards from USA. In the second part of the report, I take an educational historical approach. I observe that throughout history, recreational mathematics has been an important tool for learning mathematics. Recreational mathematics is then both a way of bringing pleasure and a tool for learning mathematics. Can it also be a tool for social empowerment?
Sumpter, L. "Recreational Mathematics – Only For Fun?," Journal of Humanistic Mathematics, Volume 5 Issue 1 (January 2015), pages 121-138. DOI: 10.5642/jhummath.201501.07 . Available at: http://scholarship.claremont.edu/jhm/vol5/iss1/7