Math and Technology: They Make the World Go ‘Round

By Sylvan Learning

High School

Cortnee Berrill, Sylvan’s Manger of all things Math, shares how math and technology are all around us!


Sitting in math class you probably find yourself thinking, “When am I ever going to use this?”


I’ll bet you didn’t know that the technology you use to help you accomplish everyday tasks is heavily rooted in math. Let’s think about some of the things you might do in the morning before school …


Math and technology in your morning routine

Your alarm goes off, you make your bed and then head to the bathroom to brush your teeth, take a shower and get dressed. When you come downstairs your parents have breakfast waiting for you. You head out the door and walk to the bus stop and wait for your ride to school. Let’s pause there and talk about all the technology and math we’ve already used before even walking into your classroom.


Here’s everyday math and technology in action

Alarm clock

Whether you use your phone or a traditional clock, programmers are responsible for creating the technology that’s used to make sure you got up on time. You also had to use your own math skills to calculate what time you should wake up to get ready and still be on time for the bus.

Brushing your teeth

Did you use an electric toothbrush? You can thank engineers for creating the technology that helps us keep our teeth healthy. The toothpaste you used was created by dentists and chemists who make sure that the formula will help keep your teeth clean and strong without hurting them.

Getting dressed

Did you check the weather before picking out your outfit? Meteorologists use tracking technology and read maps and charts to help them predict the weather so we know what we can expect. Did you pick out your favorite pair of shorts to wear? Fashion designers who created the clothes we wear use geometry when drawing their designs, and then send those drawings to clothing manufacturers who use machines to create the pieces we wear.


Maybe you had pancakes for breakfast. Food scientists study the ingredients in the pancake batter to tell us the nutritional value of what we are eating. There is a recipe on the side of the box that tells how much mix to use and what ingredients to mix in. If you have a big family, you might need to double the recipe which involves multiplication and fractions. Whoever is responsible for grocery shopping in the house likely had to use a budget and calculated the right amount of food to have to make sure your family is fed for the week.

Bus stop

The timing and mapping of each of the buses that take you to school were calculated by the school district to make sure that students are not riding the bus for too long and ensures that drivers can all start around the same time. The bus itself was designed by automotive engineers who make sure we are riding on buses that are safe for us as riders as well as safe for the environment.


So, there you have it. I bet you didn’t know you were such a technology-using mathematician. Both math and technology are all around us and we use it every single day. From the simplest of tasks to the big ones, we sure are lucky to have a world filled with such innovation that makes our lives as wonderful as they are!


Want to introduce your child to even more math and technology?

Sylvan has tons of fun math and STEM programs for kids! Whether your child needs help catching up in math, wants bigger math challenges or just wants to have fun with STEM (science, technology, engineering and math), Sylvan can help! Contact your local Sylvan to learn more.