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# Sum It Up
15 things everyone remembers about learning maths at school
Minus B, plus or minus?

IF THERE’S ONE school subject that’s almost as divisive as Irish it’s maths.

Some love it, some loathe it, and others love to hate it, but you can’t deny that we’ll all need it at some stage in our lives.

Today marks World Maths Day so we’re reflecting on our mathematical memories from both primary and secondary school….

The Abacus

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Our journey with maths started so beautifully with some adding, subtracting and a few simple beads.

The Times Tables

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Bonus points if you could reel them off at break neck speed after the spelling test of a Friday afternoon.

Sure you’d be only mortified if you didn’t get ten out of ten.

The books

The copies

That lovely square paper was reserved solely for your sums.

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Geometry sets that were used for anything BUT geometry

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You got a new one at the start of every term but felt like the day when you’d actually get to use all those exciting looking things like a protractor and compass would NEVER come.

Mathsisfun That precious protractor was just BEGGING to be used Mathsisfun

Meanwhile, they came in handy for drawing circles. Or taking the hand off you when they got loose in your school bag.

And when you eventually got to use them you realised it wasn’t even worth the wait.

The bitter shock of entering secondary school and realising that maths wasn’t all just running around the school grounds with a trundle wheel

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Making the transition from fun maths to fierce tough maths was NOT easy. Gone were the days of counting Annie and Jim’s apples and long division.

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The age of calculus and equations and theorems had arrived.

Ok class, now tell me who can solve the following problem?

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Doing this with your calculator

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Or more commonly, this:

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Getting caught rapid using one when you shouldn’t have been

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Just when you thought you’d gotten away with it, and had all the right answers, along came the teacher with those words you didn’t want to hear.

Quadratic Equations

You could reel off this formula no bother.

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But actually solving them? Or even identifying them in the first place?

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Speaking of formulas, you couldn’t beat Pythagoras’ Theorem

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Sure how else could you figure out the dimensions of the auld triangle, eh?

And memory tricks were key to learning them all off

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Wishing this was actually the right answer

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The joy of a sum well done

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Having to decide between Honours and Pass for the Leaving

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Whether you were an average Joe or the pride of the parish, they all wanted to know if you did Honours Maths in the Leaving.

Some stuck it out and reaped the rewards, others gave up before even giving it a go. And then there were the select few who dropped down on the morning of the exam.

Sure as long as you had that little blue log book handy you’d be grand, right?

And finally, that all-important question

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Read: 6 things we remember about learning Irish in school

More: 13 Irish primary school lunchbox memories

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