The scorching hot month of June is here. As the temperature rises, let’s find out how math and science have changed the world in the month of June. Spark Math by VISPARK is continuing our series, “This Month in Math History”. From discovering how to power your favorite tech to celebrating the longest day of the year, here’s the math that makes June special.
12 June 1967: Singapore issued its first currency
An important item we use daily and a big topic in math is money. When it comes to the first Singapore dollar, you can trace its history back to 12 June 1967, when Singapore issued its own currency for the first time. The first note series was the Orchid series, which featured images of various orchid specimens on the front. The native flower was chosen to symbolise progress, multicultural heritage, and Singapore’s spirit of independence.
While on the subject of money, did you know that Singapore previously had $1 paper notes in the past? View the series on the Monetary Authority of Singapore’s website.
15 June 1752: Benjamin Franklin did his kite experiment and changed the world
Benjamin Franklin is one of the most important people to have ever lived. An inventor, scientist, and most importantly, mathematician. His most famous experiment is his kite experiment. Using a kite, string, and a key tied to it, he discovered that lightning was the same thing as electricity. Proving this connection would lead to a new age of industry across the world, as well as new math formulas to help these new discoveries create more advanced lives.
Franklin not only showed the connection between electricity and lightning but also showed electrical charges can be stored in jars. He called these jars batteries. He created the ability to charge and discharge these batteries, leading to everything from lights to the smartphone. Today, scientists use “OHM’s Law” to measure electricity, finding out how powerful or safe an electrical circuit is. Making electrical systems safe is one of the many ways electricians use math while working. Even Benjamin Franklin made sure to take precautions during his experiment. With a better understanding of electricity through math, people can stay connected to their favourite devices without worrying about their safety.
17 June 1885: The Statue of Liberty arrives in New York City
The French gave the U.S. the gift of the Statue of Liberty. Here are some facts about Lady Liberty:
- The statue is over 93 metres from the ground to the tip of her torch.
- She weighs over 204 metric tonnes.
- Her foot measures 7.6 metres; that’s U.S. shoe size 879!
- In high winds, the statue can sway up to 7.6 centimetres back and forth.
21 June is the longest day of the year in the Northern Hemisphere
Here in Singapore, we experience the hot summer all year round. For countries in the Northern Hemisphere, June brings summer and the first heatwave of the year. It is all thanks to science that people are able to understand and study the four seasons.
Science is the study of the natural world, but what do we use to explain that world? Math helps science explain and predict what the natural world is capable of. Science explains that the Earth travels around the sun and the Earth rotates on its axis. People used math to formulate our concept of time in the form of years, months, and days. By counting the hours in a day that the sun is out the longest, math helped determine that the day with the longest amount of light is on 21 June, also known as the summer solstice for countries in the northern hemisphere!
Summer Solstice Trivia!
Because of the rotation of the earth, summer solstice in the Northern Hemisphere is in June, but in the Southern Hemisphere, it’s in December.
Understanding the World Through Math
The rich history of math in June reminds us that both the natural world and man-made world is composed of math. Math helps us understand how the Earth’s movement helped create the calendar. Math is also the reason science discovered how to power the device you’re reading this on. Math is the framework for buildings, structures and even giant statues. Science and math work hand in hand to discover new technology, including those found in your home to keep cool during the summer. If you enjoy learning about how master problem solvers use math to build famous buildings or fly across the world, why not become one yourself with help from Spark Math by VISPARK?
Spark Math by VISPARK uses live teachers and gamified learning to help children prepare for the top math competitions around the world. Sign up for a FREE trial class today or try some of our interactive math game demos!