July: Sound Engineering
July’s 12 Month of Math theme is Sound Engineering. Who is your favorite musician or band? How did you discover them? Chances are you found out about them by listening to a Radio Station! Radio, also called Broadcasting, is the distribution of audio content thru the electromagnetic spectrum (radio waves). As you can guess by this definition, the distribution of audio content thru radio waves requires Math! For example, every hour, a Radio Station’s Sound Engineer calculates how much power is needed in order for you to hear the Radio Station, a Disc Jockey calculates how many songs to play, and a Sales Manager calculates how many commercials to run. Radio Stations are fun places to work and math helps keep the Station on the air and playing your favorite songs!
Topic: Remember by song
Do you find it curious that you can memorize songs quicker than you can remember what you were told to buy at the grocery store? Why is this? Why are songs so much easier to remember?
Adam Sinicki writes about a few different reasons in Why do we remember songs so well?
Repetition: We tend to want to hear a song over and over, learn more of the lyrics each new time it plays.
Connections: The brain operates in pathways or electrical circuitry. A song is a multi-circuited creature. Aside from them lyrics, the brain records the tune, artist, and where you are while listening. You also will associate the new song to other songs you already know and enjoy. These many pathways allow memory access to increase.
Rhythm and Rhyme: When hearing a new song, a listener will often begin to snap, clap, nod, or bounce to the beat if they like the way it sounds. The beat is the rhythm of the song. Often, song lyrics are written in rhyme. Rhyming words are typically easier to remember than non-rhyming words.
Emotion: You may notice you are quicker to remember songs you enjoy, or to which you have a positive emotional reaction. When we experience an emotional reaction to something we hear, see, touch, taste, or smell, our brain instantly identify it as being more important.
Events and Daily Activities
Math in Coding Events
The Radio Chain Field Trip
Friday, July 13, 2018, 7:30–10:30am
This event is Full.
In July, 12 Months of Math celebrates Sound Engineering. Along with our sponsor, iHeart Media, 12 Months of Math will take up to 30 Explora members for an exclusive behind-the-scenes look at broadcast media with the JTD in the Morning team and the Chief Engineer from the 100.3 the PEAK.
The journey will begin at 7:30 am during #JTDFreeSummerFun at the New Mexico Natural History Museum (1801 Mountain Rd NW, Abq NM 87104) during the live radio show. The group will meet the station’s Chief Engineer to learn about the live, remote radio production.
At 8:15am the field trip group will board a bus to the iHeart Radio station, to reveal the back-end of producing the live show, along with a behind-the-scenes tour exploring math in sound engineering, and careers in broadcast.
The bus will return to Explora at approximately 10:30am.
Field trip participants must be 18 years or older, or accompanied by an adult guardian.
Register by Monday, July 9, 5pm.
Seats are limited* to 30 members. If you would like to participate call Trisha 505-224-8363 to reserve your spot.
*If you decide to cancel after registration, please do so by July 11, so we have a chance to contact member from the wait list.
Daily Math Activities
Math is a foundation of all music. Counting, rhythm, scales, intervals, patterns, symbols, harmonies, time signatures, overtones, tone, pitch. Individuals seeking a career path in music need a wide variety of math knowledge and understanding depending on their role. Here are a few common careers in music:
As the lead project manager behind a creative endeavor such as recording an album, or developing a live radio show, a producer’s duties are wide in scope. Math skills are utilized when budgets need to be met, or the schedule needs to be determined and met. Producers also need to be sure that the project is finished by its deadline, and work with directors on tasks like editing. Producers typically possess a bachelor’s degree, and come from a background in the creative arts.
Sound Engineering Technician
Sound engineering technicians use math and complex engineering equipment to layer pieces of music, effects, or even voices, creating a proper mix on a recording. With enough skill, they can work their way up to a supervisory position, such as a chief engineer or broadcast field supervisor. Job requirements tend to vary; sometimes, a high school education is sufficient, while others might need some college courses or an associate’s degree.
Application Software Developer
Software developers are those who create programs from scratch. If, for example, they are developing a program or app used by musicians, a complex series of code involving mathematical equations will ensure that music is used properly within the application. Furthermore, some developers create flow charts that are used by their programming staff to write the code used for the program. Software developers must have excellent programming skills and a bachelor’s degree in computer science.
Those in electronics engineering design the components that go into various electronic devices, which may include portable music players or tuners for different instruments. Electronics engineers need a very strong mathematical background in calculus, trigonometry, and algebra to become successful in their field. Electronics engineers are required to have a bachelor’s degree, and participating in a cooperative program or internship will help those looking for a career in this field.
Choreographers pick the music that is used for a dance sequence, and also need to use mathematical abilities to string together and synchronize movements to the rhythm of a song. They may be responsible for budget monitoring throughout a production. Choreographers have no specific requirements in formal education, but bachelor’s and advanced degree levels are available for those who wish to study choreography.
Are you interested in a career in the music industry? Check out Careers in Music.
Learn how these professionals use math in their careers:
12 Months of Math is looking for math events and opportunities to engage New Mexico families. If you would like to share math information with us please fill in this contact form.