The title of this blog post is the last line to a beautiful, short film called GÖMBÖC. For a film where almost nothing happens, it’s compelling watching. And wonderfully, it captures the simple, profound, mathematical joy of thinking really, really hard about a beautiful problem.

Wonder for the sake of wonder is something that all children posses. Just walk with a small child through a park at the child’s own pace. You will see that park in a way you have never seen it before, no matter how many times you have walked that path before.

One of the secrets to foster a love of math, or at least an appreciation of the beauty and function of math is to nourish that sense of awe. Gabor and Peter, in the video, were exploring a problem in math that sparked a sense of beauty and wonder. As math teachers, we should surround our students with problems that nurture wonder and curiosity. Understanding a physical event through the lens of mathematics is, in a sense, another way of viewing and appreciating its beauty. Just like a small child trying to stand on her head to see the flower from a different angle.

We would have fewer cases of math learning anxieties if we taught math, especially in the early years, with a sense of wonder and exploration. Our students may not struggle for ten years to find a solution to a problem, but they would certainly be more motivated. After all, in math, as in science, the questions are more important than the answers. Nice Video