The Science Behind Amoeba Math

There has been a virtual explosion of research on brain functioning and learning over the last 40 or so years. This has been due to new technologies that allow one to image the brain as it is working. These technologies are usually referred to by their abbreviations:PET (positron emission tomography), MRI (diffusion magnetic resonance imaging), fMRI (functional magnetic resonance imaging), and DTI (diffusion tensor imaging).

We present through a series of quotes and near-quotes some the results of this research we have gleaned from a variety of sources. An excellent source is Stanislas Dehaene’s remarkable book, The Number Sense.  Dehaene is one of the leading researchers on the neuroscience of the brain and its ability to do mathematics and language. Another great read is his 2009 book, Reading in the Brain.

Author’s Caveat: I am a mathematician, not a neuroscientist, and like Will Rogers, “I only know what I read in the newspapers”. Well, actually, books and magazines such as Science, Scientific American, Nature, and other articles found on the internet via Scholar search. So please contact me at if any of the following is overstated, wrong, or superseded by more recent research.