When the Math Doesn’t Add Up

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Math never really added up for me. I was one of the worst math students my teachers ever experienced; one actually told me this.

Many years later, the math still doesn’t add up. My son brought home a math worksheet with this problem on it:

Clue 1: I am greater than 15 and less than 40.
Clue 2: If you double me, I become a number that ends in 0.
Clue 3: 1/5 of me is equal to 5.

This might be a fun group game, but I’m not sure of the value of this worksheet or the significance of the math problem.

I’m am greater than 15 but not less than 40 (as much as it pains me to admit this). My son is less than 15 and less than 40.

I can’t think of anyone who would want to double me, and if you doubled my son, we’d need a bigger house and a case of melatonin. No math can help with these issues.

Clue 3 is so nonsensical I can’t even come up with an attempt at humor (you’re undoubtedly excited about this).

So, this is a plea to anyone who gets math. Why would my son or anyone else ever need to know the answer to this problem?

Please share your thoughts, so maybe just once, the math will add up.

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Mark Barnes is the Founder of Times 10 Publications, which produces the popular Hack Learning Series -- books and other series that provide right-now solutions for teachers and learners. Mark is the author or publisher of dozens of books, including Bestseller Hacking Education: 10 Quick Fixes for Every School. Barnes presents internationally on assessment, connected education, and Hack Learning. Join more than 150,000 interested educators who follow @markbarnes19 on Twitter.

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