For those who claim life is spicier with variety, they should try telling that to a group of students beginning to learn algebra. As far as they are concerned, there is no reason to make mathematics more difficult by adding abstract concepts to it. Few students really appreciate the ways they can apply this subject in later life, and many of them simply hope to survive it and pass enough tests to move on to more interesting subjects.
Algebra has long been a highly misunderstood class, and few people understand it is the basic language of higher mathematics. Without learning it, students will fail to progress in the important subjects of trigonometry as well as statistics. Each of them depends upon the student possessing a firm grasp of the concepts taught in algebra. If these basics are only hazily understood, the student will struggle to build on them and be unable to advance.
Not all students will have the ability or desire to learn algebra or even higher mathematics, but they are a necessity for modern life. Those who do understand them will find they have many options available in the world once they leave school, and they will be able to work in areas restricted by knowledge. It is their ability to learn the very complex abstract language of mathematics that will give them their chance to succeed.
For those who simply want to learn enough to pursue less complex subjects, algebra is still important. Word problems are a fundamental part of learning this subject, and it will help students in later life when they need to sort out issues and solve them. It gives them added discipline that might not necessarily involved numbers, but manipulating the variables correctly is the key to addressing issues with a number of factors to find a workable solution.