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2,399 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Long word problem, made short...

5 people sharing 8 pieces of toast, how much does each person get?

Ds, trying to get us to understand his answer -

each person gets one whole piece
cut the remaining pieces in fifths
each person would receive 3/15
simplified to 1/5
each would have 1 1/5

Several years ago, he easily figured out a word problem of 5 people/three brownies. The reasoning used in this current problem is similar to the to the kind of reasoning I would have used as a child. Does anyone else see how one could convince themselves this could be right? Once we reviewed this with him, he instantly saw what he was doing wrong; however, he did have me second-guessing myself for the briefest of moments, after hearing his explanation.

Premium Member
11,469 Posts
He changed from fifths to fifteenths when he changed his definition of a whole from "a piece of toast" to "all of the remaining toast". So the 1/5 is 1/5 of the remaining 3 pieces, not 1/5 of a piece... it actually sounds like one of those math puzzles, with his explanation.... but yes, I can see how a child might be confused by this concept.

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