National Mathematics Day – History, Significance and Facts
Since ancient times, wise men and scholars in India like Aryabhatta, Shakuntala Devi, Brahmagupta, Mahavira, Srinivasa Ramanujan have been applauded for their exemplary contribution to the field of mathematics. National Maths Day is celebrated to mark the birth anniversary of the mathematics genius Srinivasa Ramanujan and his contribution to the field of mathematics. Celebrated on 22 December, Mathematics Day was declared as a day to mark the birth of the stalwart on his 125th birth anniversary. In his short lifespan, Srinivasa Ramanujan born on 22 December 1887, made innumerable contributions to various aspects of mathematics like fractions, mathematics theory and analysis.
When Is National Mathematics Day?
National Mathematics Day is commemorated on 22 December since 2012. The then Prime Minister, Dr. Manmohan Singh paid tribute to the 125th birth anniversary of Ramanujan as happy National Mathematics Day. The day is intended to be regarding the significant legacy of Ramanujan’s contribution to the field of Maths.
History of National Mathematics Day
The former Prime Minister of India, Dr. Manmohan Singh, paid tribute to Srinivasa Ramanujan on his 125th birth anniversary on 22 December 2012 in Chennai to recognise his contribution to the field of maths. Started in Chennai, the day is celebrated as National Mathematics Day.
Importance of National Mathematics Day
The most important reason to celebrate National Mathematics Day is to raise awareness about the importance of mathematics in people and the integral part it plays in the development of humanity. Training for these is provided to teachers and students through camps. The main objective is to highlight the development, assembly, implementation of teaching and learning materials for mathematics and other related areas in research.
How Is National Mathematics Day Celebrated?
Information about National Mathematics Day is not just restricted to the date of the celebration. There are several ways in which the day is celebrated across India. A few ways the day is celebrated are listed below:
- Schools, colleges, universities and other educational institutions celebrate the day by taking various steps, measures to educate students in mathematics and spread knowledge.
- UNESCO and India work in tandem to spread more information about mathematics learning and understanding.
- National Academy of Science India, the oldest science academy situated in Allahabad conducts a two-day workshop on application of Mathematics and Ramanujan.
- Speakers from all over the country and the world attend to discuss the contribution of Srinivasa Ramanujan in Mathematics.
- The workshop also discusses the contribution of India to Vedic mathematics.
- Quizzes and mathematics workshops are held across several schools in India to get children to participate and enhance their knowledge.
Facts About Srinivasa Ramanujan for Kids
Srinivasa Ramanujan, the genius was regarded at par with Euler and Jacobi from the 18th and 19th centuries. Born into a traditional Tamil Brahmin family, he gave an entirely new connotation to mathematics. His father was a clerk in a sari shop and mother a singer at a local temple. Their earnings were meagre and they barely managed to bring up Ramanujan with lots of comforts. He compiled 4000 mathematical equations and results including the number theory, fractions, infinite series that opened new avenues for mathematical research. He was obsessed with mathematics and failed to get a scholarship at the Government Arts College in Kumbakonam as he failed the other subjects. His main source of inspiration was “Synopsis of elementary results in pure mathematics” by G S Carr. He came from a humble background and lived with the poorest of means. However, that did not serve as a deterrent to him pursuing his love and passion. A few interesting facts about the genius:
- Ramanujan solved the regular mathematical problems at the age of ten without any formal training. He was a voracious reader of mathematics that developed his understanding of the subject and the tricks involved to solve the problem. His memory for mathematical formulas, expressions and constants were boundless. Ramanujan worked out Loeny’s trigonometry exercises without any help.
- He was a loner in school as his peers found it difficult to understand him and were in awe of his mathematical acumen.
- He failed to get a degree as he could not manage to get through his other subjects, although he excelled in maths.
- Ramanujan was married at the young age of 12 to Janaki who was just ten years old then.
- As paper was expensive, Ramanajun used a slate to jot down the results of his derivations. He published his first paper in the Journal of the Indian Mathematical Society in 1911.
- In 1914, Ramanujan travelled to England in 1914 where he was tutored by Hardy with whom he collaborated for some research. The number 1729 is well known as the Hardy-Ramanujan number after Ramanajun solved the mystery of the number to Hardy when he went to visit him in hospital.
- Ramanujan was the first Indian to be selected as a Fellow of Trinity College at Cambridge. He was the second Indian to be offered a fellowship in the Royal Society.
- Ramanujan worked out the Reimann series, hypergeometric series, functional equations of the zeta function and his own theory of divergent series.
- Ramanujan died at the age of 32 due to hepatic amoebiasis. He suffered from dysentery and vitamin deficiencies.
- There is a dedicated museum to Srinivasa Ramanujan in Chennai, Tamil Nadu.
Ramanujan was indeed a genius born to be celebrated. A biopic ‘The Man who knew Infinity’ starring Dev Patel was made recently. He is truly recognised and regarded as a visionary who changed the description of mathematics and opened a whole new world of avenues to the field. Mathematics Day is celebrated to promote and cultivate the love for the magnificent tradition of Indian mathematics and its contribution to the field.