On Tuesday 19 January, Christopher Au, one of our ‘’Honoree” students from the class of 2015, gave his Theory of Knowledge presentation to our Mathematics staff. His accomplished presentation was titled, “What role does beauty play in mathematical knowledge?” He concentrated on four ways of knowing: imagination, emotion, intuition and reason. These are four of the eight ways of knowing that are specified as an integral part of the Theory of Knowledge course in the IB.
He spoke of the beauty and emotion he found in studying some complex Mathematics involved in solving particular equations and how, as a visual representation of the mathematics, he was able to produce what some would say, are beautiful pictures. An example is shown in the accompanying photograph. Christopher made comparisons between the concept of beauty in Mathematics and in Arts such as painting, literature, poetry and music. He compared Mandelbrot sets with paintings from Picasso and musical pieces by Bach and Mozart. He also spoke about the intricate equations describing actions such as juggling.
The Mathematics Faculty greatly appreciated Christopher’s fine efforts.
Robyn Gregory | Mathematics Teacher