Is Math Red or Blue?

Diving into the long time debate over assigning colors and classes.
Is Math Red or Blue?

There is just one question that tears apart friendships, causes outrage in a classroom, prompts a deep dive into obscure neurological conditions and makes people question what is normal since kindergarten: “is math red or blue?” This question has haunted far too many souls from the time a friend jokingly asked the question or a teacher chose it to be the question of the day.

The brain automatically assigning different classes colors can be a sign of a neurological phenomenon known as synesthesia. The Cleveland Clinic defines synesthesia as: “your brain routing sensory information through multiple unrelated senses, causing you to experience more than one sense simultaneously.” 

While we could dive further into the scientific background of this topic, it is arguably more interesting to hear the reasoning from a member of the two largest camps. After polling 60 students, most agree that math is either blue or red with a few outliers choosing yellow. Two Communicator staff agreed to share their thoughts on the matter, Fina Kutcher arguing for red and Kyrie Garwood rooting for blue.

Math is Red
Math is Red

Exhausted, I glance over to my phone to see 1:47 a.m. glowing back at me from across my dimly lit room. Knowing I need to be up in just a few hours to get ready for school, a wave of frustration and anger crashes over me. Though longing for my bed, I know I have to keep pushing through to get my homework all the way to completion.

Over the course of my life as a student, I cannot count how many late nights like this I’ve spent in my room flustered, confused, tired and slowly drudging through math homework. Personally, I’ve never been able to call myself a math prodigy by any means — it’s always been a particularly difficult subject for me to wrap my head around. In my experience working in the subject, a few key emotions tend to rise within me: frustration, anger and confusion, to name a few. What do these all have in common? Most of them — especially anger — are commonly represented or associated with the color red. There’s something about being in a math classroom, or my bedroom in the wee hours of the morning, and being stuck on one tricky problem that just screams “red” to me.

Math is Blue
Math is Blue

I’ve often found that a math classroom is like a dentist’s office. In a past life I could imagine people anxiously waiting for their turn to be told they’re not flossing enough – I can still smell the fluoride. I think most people would associate dentist offices with blue if they had to pick a color. Something about the sterile, nervous environment makes it exude an icy, spine-chilling blue. When you associate this type of environment with any class I think you would be bound to carry the color over as well.

Although opinions may vary on the color palette for a math class, the one thing we can agree on is that science is and will always be green. 

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About the Contributor
Kyrie Garwood, Journalist
Kyrie is a junior at Community and is in her first semester on staff. When she's not at CHS you can probably find her at Pioneer where she dives, plays basketball, and plays softball. On the rare occasion, she's not at Pioneer she enjoys going to the movies with friends, playing Euchre, and working as a lifeguard at Vet's Pool. Kyrie is eager to write and share important stories about those in our community.

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