Mathematics is a subject that is difficult for a lot of people. Many find it confusing, or simply don't understand how interesting it can be.
Little tips and tricks can not only make math easier for people, they can also show them the fun side of the subject.
Percentages are especially difficult for many people, and also something that frequently need to be calculated in daily life.
Ben Stephens (@stephens_ben) shared a fairly simple trick to figuring out difficult Percentages on Twitter, and people were amazed that they had never been taught to do it that way.
He explains that the concept of x*y = y*x applies to percentages too!
It really works guys!
Someone wanted to know why it works, and Ben was happy to explain.
"It works for the same reason 3 x 5 is the same as 5 x 3. They call it the commutative property-- it doesn't matter which order the terms come in."
"A percentage calculation (x% of y) could also be thought of as; x * 1/100 * y In any order...same answer."
Quite a few Twitter users thanked Ben for sharing the tip.
Several people were shocked that nobody had ever explained this to them (or that they hadn't realized it themselves) before.
There were a few people who insisted on taking the patronizing route and questioning why everyone hadn't magically figured this out on their own.
Stephens wasn't having any of it, though.
These people had to be ignoring the fact that mathematics are largely treated as a big, confusing, esoteric subject by American schools. If you don't "get it" without really being taught, you aren't going to be encouraged to pursue math.
Ben also shared a quick tip to help calculate tips at restaurants too!
Mathematics doesn't have to be this big, scary thing that we begrudgingly learn the basics of and then try to use as little as humanly possible. With teachers who are willing to engage their students, and a pretty big shift in perception, math can actually be pretty fun.