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Gamifying mathematics - mission possible?

Karlstad youth community centre to make maths more appealing

Karlstad youth community centre to make maths more appealing

The idea came from an engineering student in the city

Back in January and February the Swedish Municipality of Karlstad gave full-time students at the local university the chance to come up with a creative idea, which could be quickly implemented in the city and bring about positive change.

The winner of the 2022 competition was Atle Andersson Nykvist, a fourth-year mechanical engineering student, with his idea of ​​producing an interactive place where people of different ages can learn about mathematics by feeling, spinning, and moving things. His reward is a summer job at the local administration.

Stirring curiosity about mathematics

The city jury's motivation for the winning entry reads: “The idea is to create a creative and playful way of approaching a subject that for many can be experienced as challenging. Making maths accessible in an unconditional and easy way can help to create curiosity about the subject”.

Furthermore, the jury comments that “the business community has a challenge with the supply of skills linked to mathematics. Atle wants to promote public education in the subject and we need many people in the future who like and want to become good at maths”.

Quite aptly, the interactive math puzzles will be placed in the newly-constructed Kronoteket youth centre, which won the Municipality’s Architectural Prize for 2020.

The building already has many visitors from a large age range. Kronoteket combines a park, leisure center and library in the same place. There, the hope is that Atle's math puzzles can create community, inclusion and curiosity about math. Atle, who himself works extra as a private teacher in the subject, wants younger people to be able to take on math in a playful way.

He explained: “With this, I hope that people who usually turn their backs when they hear the word math are instead tricked into learning about this fantastic subject!

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