One for the Math People

From review of a new math book for girls by the woman who played “Winnie Cooper” on The Wonder Years:

Mathematics is, in itself, an exercise in the abstract — twiddling funny squiggles on paper, really, which is fairly pointless except to mathematicians. It’s when math is applied to the universe that the mental game becomes something useful. Budgets can be balanced, bridges designed and laws of physics deduced. So good math education is in society’s best interest…

Danica McKellar, better known as Winnie Cooper, Kevin’s love interest on the TV series “The Wonder Years,” retains the rigor yet takes a friendlier approach (she substitutes the word “Happyland” for algebra in the first chapter) in her latest best seller, “Hot X: Algebra Exposed!”

Aimed at teenage girls, “Hot X” is a cross between a math class and a slumber party, and a perky, self-affirming slumber party at that: interspersed among the math are anecdotes about boys and testimonials about struggles and triumphs with math.

Read the rest here.