Mom Shares 2nd-Grader’s Math Problem Online, and Hardly Anyone Can Solve It

August 15, 2019 Updated: August 15, 2019

It makes sense that math problems will become more challenging for students as they progress in their studies. But one mom was left stumped when she tried to help her second-grade daughter with her maths homework. Is our kids’ homework getting more and more difficult?

Australian mom Angie Werner was helping her second-grade daughter, Ayla, with her homework just like any other day on Jan. 24, 2018. Everything was going smoothly for her until she came to one question that had her scratching her head.

The question read: “There are 49 dogs signed up to compete in the dog show. There are 36 more small dogs than large dogs signed up to compete. How many small dogs are signed up to compete?”

Unable to get to a solution, Werner wrote to private Facebook group “Breastfeeding Mama Talk in Private” to ask for help.

“Ok we’re all stumped,” the puzzled Werner told fellow Facebook users. “My 2nd graders homework HELP! everyone is allowed to share,” she added.

The question given to a class aged seven and eight left many social media users baffled. Facebook users soon responded to her question.

According to POPSUGAR, one user wrote: “Wouldn’t [it] be 49 dogs – 36 small dogs? That make [sic] 13 large dogs. So 13 large dogs + 36 small dogs = 49 dogs together. So the answer is 36. It’s a trick question lol, right?”

What are they teaching these kids… 🤔🤔

تم النشر بواسطة ‏‎LADbible‎‏ في الأربعاء، ٣١ يناير ٢٠١٨

There were others who suggested the answer to be 42.5.

“49-36=13. 13/2=6.5. 36+6.5=42.5. That’s how I did it in my head. Is that the right way to do it? Lol I haven’t done math like this since I was in school!” one mom wrote.

Another mom wrote: “If there is a total of 49 dogs and 36 of them are small dogs then there are 13 large dogs. That means 36 small dogs subtracted by 13 large dogs then there are 23 more small dogs than large dogs. 36-13=23.  BOOM!!! WOW! Anyone saying there’s half and medium dogs tho just no!”

Netizens are torn between the right solution.

Can you outsmart this confusing elementary math question?

تم النشر بواسطة ‏‎Reader's Digest‎‏ في الثلاثاء، ١٣ فبراير ٢٠١٨

So, what exactly is the correct answer?

Werner asked Ayla’s math teacher but she couldn’t work it out herself! “I just got home and the teacher copy and pasted from the districts website. She even couldn’t do it,” Werner wrote. “She was stumped! She was going to research the weekend and get back to us. She was in awe that THIS happened!”

Later, Werner got the answer to this 2nd-grade question that stumped the internet from the school district. Well, the answer is 42.5 even if it doesn’t seem fitting to have half a dog.

“The district worded it wrong,” Werner said. “The answer would be 42.5, though, if done at an age appropriate grade.”

Illustration – Shutterstock | Robert Kneschke

Just in case you couldn’t figure out the above, use “x” to substitute large dogs and “y” for small dogs.

Thus, the two equations are: 49 = x+y and y = x+36

Here is how you solve them:
49 = x + x+36
49 = 2x + 36
13 = 2x
x = 6.5
y = 42.5

To put it simply, 49 minus 36 is 13. Thirteen divided by two is 6.5. Hence, 36 plus 6.5 equals 42.5.

Nobody would want half a dog, but that was how it should be solved. Could you solve this second-grade math problem on your first try? If any seven- or eight-year-olds can figure this out, they’re surely a math genius!

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