Everyone’s a winner! But we’re not handing Common Core cheerleaders any participation trophies for this one.

A teacher shared this breathtakingly stupid math problem with Twitchy reader @KevinPost. It’s reportedly from a Common Core-aligned book.

Say wha?

After seeing this kind of gobbledygook many times, we’re all out of shocked faces. Twitchy founder Michelle Malkin called her daughter’s Houghton Mifflin algebra textbook a “nightmare” when she tweeted about the error-ridden text. Juanita’s sticker predicament appears to be from a Houghton Mifflin Assessment Guide.

For context, check out this chapter a fourth-grade teacher uploaded to her website (PDF). It includes the same sticker scenario and the preceding questions offer no additional information to help students solve the poorly-worded problem. So the answer is up to you!

Special thanks to @KevinPost for bringing this example to our attention.


Twitchy readers responding to our tweet of this post have replied that the answer is definitely “12.” Or “24.” Or “0.” Or “7.”

It’s all clear now, huh? Of those answers, we think 12 would be the smallest number of stickers she should buy (if we’re reading the problem correctly). But if the goal was to confuse people with a strangely-worded question, then score!


Answers continue to come in (see comments below and tweets sent to @TwitchyTeam) and there’s one thing that is clear: the phrasing is misleading enough that adults are interpreting the question in several different ways. How does that help kids learn math?


You have to see these unintelligible Common Core assignments posted by angry parents

Must-see Common Core math problems of the day [pics]

Michelle Malkin takes on reality-challenged Common Core mouthpiece

Dana Loesch slams Common Core, Arne Duncan on ‘Kelly File’ 

Education Secretary’s statement about Common Core opponents sparks ‘Moms Against Duncan’

First grade teacher mocks Common Core

‘Who should survive?’: Common Core assignment mixes race, religion and lifeboats

Michelle Malkin: My child’s Common Core-aligned Algebra book is crap

  • http://www.artinphoenix.com/gallery/grimm snowleopard (the true one)

    A question with no substance, no correct answer, and not enough information to make a logical conclusion based on truth…

    Typical of the left.

    • Texan357

      But we must DO SOMETHING! :)

      • therealguyfaux ✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

        “Fo’ de chirruns.”

        • 0bamasnought

          I prefer churros.

          • $41378716

            …said Juanita.

    • Jack Deth


      “There is no Truth!” You can’t handle the Truth!”

      “The truth is what the Left tells you!!!”

    • Ryan Johnson

      Personally I’m a LOT more concerned with what Twitchy posted awhile ago…!!!


      • Geary Marks

        Do they serve Soylent Green at this school for lunch?

      • drw


      • Lanin Thomasma

        Sing to the sailors on the Floating Fortress…

    • rssllue

      The only thing “common” about this curriculum is that it is rotten to the “core.”

    • Del

      Perfect. I love rounding people up to 100 likes. LOL

    • James Dutton

      They are not looking to teach truth, just compliance

  • http://www.artinphoenix.com/gallery/grimm snowleopard (the true one)

    Why is this any real shock in ‘Common (Communist) Core’? This is the very same education mandate that demanded students rewrite the Constitution, uses propaganda statements of ‘the governments leaders must always be obeyed’, and altered the Second Amendment to state that we do not have the rights to bear or even possess firearms.

  • Greyson Wolfe 75

    say wha????? OMG..trophy for everyone! pathetic and we wonder why we rank 26th was it?

  • 1952issue

    so this is how children are supposed to learn math and reasoning skills? The right answer is someone from the government is going to come confiscate the stickers then parcel them out.

  • DeadlockVictim

    Six, since it a multiple of both two and three.

    • BreadNCircus

      Yeah. I think people missed the boat on this one. If you have an odd number, the three covers you, if even, the two does. Although, what if she has a prime number of friends? Hmm.

      • John W.

        And furthermore, the question asks how many stickers Juanita could buy, but doesn’t tell us a) how many stickers she already owns; b) whether stickers can be purchased with an EBT card; c) whether the stickers are made from recyclable material; d) whether she plans to give stickers of equal size, shape, color and density to all of her friends to avoid making any of her friends feel bad; or e) whether her friends want to receive any bags of stickers from her. All of these issues I’ve mentioned, as well as all of the issues that I haven’t yet mentioned, must be thoroughly addressed before we could even think about starting to solve the problem.

        • Thomas Dobbins

          Juanita must also consider her friends with gender identity specific needs!

      • AMSilver

        Her choices seem to be between 4 and 6 bags of stickers but without knowing how many friends she has and how many stickers are in a bag, there’s no possible way of knowing the right answer. What if there’s one sticker per bag and she has 5 friends? 2 stickers per bag and she has 8 friends? 260 stickers per bag and she has 15 friends? A basic premise of math is that you can solve a problem when there is one unknown variable. With two unknown variables, the best you can do is simplify the equation.

    • Jeffrey Harbin

      What if she has eleventy gajillion friends? 6 seems kind of low.

  • Macharius

    Can someone explain #4 to me (in the “chapter 5 test”)? How do i make a rectangle with 19 cubes that are connected. Shouldn’t the answer be zero? or am i over thinking it. Also, for #11 are we to assume the numbers are interchangeable or is each block considered “unique”.

    • http://amandakmelson.wordpress.com/ GreenEyedGal

      For #4, a 1×19 rectangle is the only answer I can think of, much like what is shown on problem 13.

      For #11, a 1×16, a 2×8 and a 4×4, so I think the answer would be b.

      • JamesMc

        I agree with you on question #4. 1X19 seems to be the only right answer.
        #11 is trickier and (B) is probably the intended correct answer. However, it begs an assumption that: (1.) a 1X16 shape is the same as a 16X1 shape. And (2.) that the rectangular shape formed by the blocks must be completely filled with blocks to make the shape*.

        *The question does specify that the blocks are “connecting”, though I’m not sure what that actually means other than a block can’t be placed apart from all other blocks.

    • JamesMc

      #9 is giving me trouble.

      James has a card collection with 64 basketball cards, 32 football cards, and 24 baseball cards. He wants to arrange the cards in equal piles, with only one type of card in each pile. How many can he put in each pile?

      Other than 120 piles of one card in each pile (the total number cards), I’m not coming up with any other answer. The maximum number of cards is 3 per pile based on the only one card type condition. However, they must also be in equal piles. Assuming equal refers to number of cards and all the cards must be placed in a pile, this would mean 120 piles of 1 card in each pile.

      • sfalphageek

        I *think* its supposed to be a greatest common factor problem, so the answer would be a pile size of 8 cards per pile (but the way the question is worded, any common factor would work, so the answer could be 4, 2, or 1.)

        the problem has two constraints:
        1) piles have equal numbers of cards.

        2) piles have to each have only one type – that is, each set of cards (24, 32, 64) has to divide evenly into whatever the pile size is – in other words, the pile size has to be a common factor of all three sets of cards. There’s no additional constraint, like “James wants to make as few piles as possible,” so the pile size doesn’t have to be the greatest common factor, and multiple answers are correct.

        • JamesMc

          I see. You read “only one type of card in each pile” as each pile must be homogeneous. I kept reading it and assumed that it meant that no multiples of a single card type per pile.
          You’re correct. That’s what it meant.

          • Robyn

            That’s how I read it too! I thought it meant you had to have one of each card in every pile, meaning you could only have 3 cards in each pile, but there is no answer choice for 3!! I was so frustrated and I TEACH this stuff! Grrrrrr. Such a ridiculous question.

          • Ricardo Sosa

            Well, Robyn, if you teach this stuff then I have no choice but to pray for your students.

            There’s a lot of messed up questions in that test, and this one can have multiple correct answers.
            But please note that the problem clearly says “…with only one type of card in each pile.” There’s no other interpretation to THAT, especially not “one of each card in every pile.”

            Gotta work on those comprehension skills.

      • Rick C

        Naw, the answer’s 8 cards. 3 piles of baseball cards, 4 of football, 8 of basketball. Either that or the person who wrote the problem is on crack.

        • Rick C

          Oh, I should say, you’re answer’s not wrong, mathematically, but it’s probably not what the expected answer is. Obviously, mathematically, 1, 2, 4, or 8 will work.

        • JamesMc

          Yeah. I kept trying to arrange piles by having only one of each card type into the piles rather than arranging them in homogeneous groups and finding common denominators. Little bit of mental dyslexia.

      • Zathras11 @B5

        All three numbers (64, 32, 24) are divisible by 8.

  • Janice LEE

    I’ll share this math problem sent home by a teacher in our local school some years ago. Before the Core appeared. There were ten apples on the tree. Four fell off the tree. How many in all.
    At least this gem did not get tenure.

    • Thomas Dobbins


  • ForTheRepublicOfDave

    I don’t…. I can’t….I uh….

    This question is RACIST!

  • Jack Deth

    Juanita has friends?!!!

    If Juanita can have friends, I want half of them!

    My friend, Pavel wants the Eastern portion of Juanita’s Western friends!
    *Apologies to Vaughn Meader and ‘The First Family’*

    • http://www.FunDMental.com TheRealJackpineSavage

      There is too much Friend Disparity in this country. Juanita has too many friends and Jack seems to have only one. This cannot be tolerated!

      (I’ll be your friend Jack) :o)

  • shalom08

    Somehow, I know this question will haunt me all throughout the night. Sigh. #mathnerdprobs

  • Peejay70

    It is an awkward question. How could she not know how many friends she’s giving stickers to? But the correct answer is any number that is a multiple of both 4 and 6. So 0,12,24,36,48 etc etc etc are all correct answers.

    • shalom08

      I agree. This question is poorly worded.

      I think the correct question should have been – “What is the least amount of stickers that Juanita could buy so that there are no stickers left?”

      Here, the answer is twelve.

      • Peejay70

        Agreed. And it also should have said that Juanita is unsure whether she’s giving stickers to 4 friends or 6, rather than using 4 bags or 6. But yeah, horrible question.

        • iVillageIdiot

          I would have gone with 42 and a hat tip to Douglas Adams, but I see the logic of your exchange with shalom08. 😉

          • Paul Ahlquist

            42, yes, indeed.

      • JP

        Again unless she has 5 friends, or 11 friends, or 321 friends.

    • Robyn

      Not true. We don’t know how many friends she has. What if she has five friends? Neither 4 bags nor 6 bags will answer the question. And the question says she will either buy 4 bags OR 6 bags – not 0, not 8, not 12, not 24, etc.

      • Jay Stevens

        You need two pieces of information: how many friends and how many stickers per bag.

    • JP

      How can you even pretend to know the answer when you have no idea how many friends she has? What if she has 7 friends? Will 12, 24, 36, or 48 work? Nope. This is impossible to answer without more information.

    • Jay Stevens

      No. The answer is 0. Nobody needs any stickers.

    • MidAtlanticWoman

      Maybe she is not giving ENTIRE bags of stickers to her friends. How many stickers are in each bag??

      • Kyle Schroeck

        All of you are wrong, They are the government’s stickers.

  • NickGranite

    Unintelligible. Like Harry Reid’s rambling, incoherent reply telling a Las Vegas newscaster that Obama told the “truth” about keeping your insurance…even though Obama already apologized for it.

  • H50 ✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

    Juanita must go to the money tree and pick enough money so that she can buy all of the stores stickers. Its good for the economy and spreads the wealth around.
    She must then line up all of her friends and dole out the stickers to her friends one by one.

    She should make sure that if for some reason she has any conservative friends, they are all at the end of the line, so that if she runs short of stickers, conservatives are the only ones that get screwed.

    If they cry because the of the sticker disparity, who cares, it serves them right for being evil conservatives of privilege anyway.

  • Marcy Cook

    Oh For Heaven’s Sake People! Juanita needs to buy 0 stickers. “Buy” is the word you should pay attention to. She does not need to buy anything. Obama will give her everything she needs for free.

  • Guest

    The minimum is 12. If she needs 4 bags then she can have equal numbers of 3. If 6 bags then 2 each.

    The questions’ attempt seems to be if she is not sure if she needs 4 or 6 bags how many stickers should she buy in order to ensure each get an even amount in either case.

    • Patrick J.

      Absolutely weird problem to ask, seems right in line with the obsession with word problems. Now, don’t get me wrong, contextualizing values is a necessary skill… but not at the age where children are learning, mostly, by rote. Add to that the missing information which shouldn’t be missing (bags, versus not bags)… and so on… why would you need two types of bags? For a small self-contained problem there’s a lot missing.

      Lets get this out the way. The whole purpose for teaching prime factorization and least common multiples is a means to handle fractions. Period. You don’t need any more factorization until you get to Algebra. In real life we use it to take things and simplify them down to something our brains can deal with. Making this a quick skill makes you more useful on your feet.

      The problem that’s presented… why would you EVER do that?!?!?! Its tortured stuff like this that makes me hate word problems.

      That being said, I could CERTAINLY see something with open ended parameters for a high school logic class or something involving critical thinking. People who have never had responsibility for things will tend not to have the ability to abstract out a problem. Not making an excuse for the above.

      My general problem with the “science” of teaching is that its often a shallow idea taken large. That doesn’t mean that there are not serious people. Its just the intellectual depth is akin to a neurotic mother’s kiddie pool.

      • Paul Ahlquist

        Least common multiple & greatest common divisor… darned useful for mentally unit-price comparing two package putups at the store.

  • http://truthbeagle.blogspot.com/ Plep’s Trumplimo

    If Juanita is a bureaucrat, the answer is 1

  • Underestimated

    Some are assuming too much. 6 covers 2 friends, 3 friends or 6 friends. What if she has 5 friends? Or even 4. Don’t act so smug. Just admit it is a stupid question without enough information for a proper answer. Homeschool!

  • therealguyfaux ✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

    I’m-a hafta get pedantic here.

    The questions dealing with rectangles seem to assume that we are talking equiangular though not equilateral 4-sided polygons.

    There is nothing ruling out a square, both equilateral AND equiangular.

    All squares are rectangles, but not all rectangles are squares.

    • tankdemon

      I thought all squares were rhombuses.

      • therealguyfaux ✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

        That too, but again, not all rhombi are squares.
        (“Rhombus” = Equilateral 4-sided polygon though not necessarily equiangular.)

        • tankdemon

          Nifty how you oh so slyly corrected my total disregard for the proper fancy Latinate plural of the word rhombus without trying to make me look like a fool.

          • therealguyfaux ✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

            It’s probably derived from the Greek anyway– I just said “rhombi” to be funny, actually…

          • tankdemon

            Damn. Now I have to go to dictionary.com because I won’t be able to think of anything else until I find out for sure the proper plural of rhombus. Edit- just got back, and both versions are listed.

          • therealguyfaux ✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

            How could I have been so remiss, as not to have whipped out some that ol’ fashion New Math from the 60’s, anyway? “Square, rhombus and rectangle are all elements of the set of words describing 4-sided polygons” “Squares are a subset of rectangles” “Squares are a subset of Rhom(buses)/(bi)” “The Venn diagram would show ‘square’ as a nested circle inside the ‘rectangle’ circle/’rhombus’ circle”

          • John W.

            You must have looked at the Common Core version of dictionary.com.

          • Jay Stevens

            wikipedia says both plural forms are correct. It lists “rhombi” first, so I am guessing that that is preferable.

        • j p✓ʳᵉᶠʳᶦᵉᵈ

          I work with two Boris’s, Should I call them the Bori?

          • jenniinAK


          • therealguyfaux ✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

            It depends on how well you know them. Some people don’t like to be addressed by their given names.

  • Chris618

    first thing my 10 y/o said: ” how many friends does she have?”

    • http://steamcommunity.com/id/pwag42 Swagner

      Children: 1
      Common Core: 0

    • schveiguy

      That’s the correct answer! It’s new math, answer a question with another question. Be combative for extra points.

  • Clayton Grant

    Trick question. Juanita is protesting until someone else buys her friends some stickers.

  • therealguyfaux ✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

    The person who devised the questions, a Mr Bud Abbott, was unavailable for comment…

    • iVillageIdiot

      Third base!

      • jenniinAK


        • therealguyfaux ✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

          I don’t give a damn! (“He’s the shortstop!”)

    • blockthiscnn

      Excellent reference.

  • Bill Sturm


  • schveiguy

    She buys 6 bags stickers with her EBT card, then goes to the next store to return them for cash, so she can buy drugs.

    That was so easy, how come nobody got that?

  • DallenH

    More information definitely needed:

    How many friends have parents with income over $250,000 per year?
    How many friends are minorities?
    How many friends are girls?
    Do the stickers support women’s rights?
    Do the stickers portray anything that could hurt anyone’s feelings?

    • http://twitter.com/thetugboatphil TugboatPhil ✓Mate

      The correct answer is “anything.”

      Then when the teacher tells the kid that answer is wrong (and is fired for disenfranchising the child’s self-esteem) the kid can issue a Revised Answer and blame the unexpectedly low answer previously on seasonal employment.

  • Bill Sturm

    correct 12 and multiples thereof

  • Right Wired ✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

    ‘Stickers’ is code for ‘crack’.

  • no_more_deceit


  • $56231069

    Surely it depends on how many friends she has?

    • Scorpion

      Since she obviously is a Common Core Math student, she would be unable to count them.

      • H50 ✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

        But she’d probably get a sticker for participating.

    • Michelle ✓classified

      I was thinking the same thing – how is it possible to answer this without knowing how many friends? Also, the question indicates she’s not sure if she should get four or six bags of stickers, then asks you to determine how many stickers she could buy with no leftovers. Are they looking for an answer on the total number of stickers or the total number of bags of stickers? Because the way the question is worded, the student would also need to know how many stickers are in each bag.

      • H50 ✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

        Need to know how many classmates/friends and how many stickers in each package.

        • Michelle ✓classified

          Plus, if Juanita lives in Los Angeles, we must first determine if her mother’s EBT card has enough on it to purchase the stickers and if not, and Juanita gets arrested for shoplifting, who will post her bail?

          • H50 ✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

            So many missing factors to consider. Sigh
            This question’s answer might just end up as another one of life’s great mysteries!

          • Michelle ✓classified

            I think Dateline ought to look into it…

          • JP

            Unfortunately she is about to learn that you can’t buy stickers with EBT so she will have to sell the EBT card for 4 or 6 bags of stickers and one baggie with a white powdery substance.

      • $56231069

        Right. Because if she wants to give “bags of stickers” to her friends then there should be no leftover individual stickers no matter how many bags she buys. Ridiculous.

        • H50 ✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

          So she just needs to decide how many friends she has, four or six?

          • grais

            Poor Juanita. She’ll need state-mandated therapy soon.

          • H50 ✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

            She will feel bad about herself if she is supposed to have six friends and only has four. :(

          • $56231069

            So the answer depend on how high she can count. Well, that’s mathematical.

        • Michelle ✓classified

          Exactly. How many bags of stickers should Juanita buy without having any leftover bags? Oh, I dunno – how many friends does she want to buy a bag of stickers for? Boom. Done. If the answer is supposed to indicate how many stickers…oh, I dunno, how many friends is she giving them to and how many come in each bag? Boom. Done.

          All I can say is the Los Angeles School District oughta count their lucky stars that I have no children in their system. I would so seriously be calling them out on this bullsh*t.

      • grais

        The answer to both of your questions is : no one has any idea.
        The upshot would seem to be that there is no correct answer or incorrect answer. Math will soon be all about feelings.

        • H50 ✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

          Feeeeelings…wo wo wo…. feeeeeeelings….
          Sorry, those darned PCP flashbacks get me every time!

    • grais

      Common Core proponent response to OneleggedTarzan :

  • Suzyqpie

    Who thinks this stuff up. What kind of a vacuous mind assembles words into a meaningless rambling with no goal or thought…stunning, should provide an impetus to private school growth.

  • http://www.nleomf.org/officers/ FlatFoot

    Been using this the last 1.5 years. I didn’t think it would end up being so literal though…

  • Mark Mitchell

    Forget that question, look at the other questions, especially the ones about building things with ‘connecting cubes’. I’m guessing it’s assumed that the kid builds whatever he/she builds solid, and not just the outline of it, but how do we know for certain?

    I know when I was a kid, if asked a question like that, I wouldn’t have been able to answer because I wouldn’t know which they meant. It’s too open-ended. Same thing with the questions about ‘some kid did homework. What answers did they get?’ 4th grade me, not even trying to be a smart alec would have said, “I don’t know. Did he get it right?” What’s wrong with just asking the question directly, rather than using such a roundabout way?

    • H50 ✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

      Because you cant get all the key indoctrination words in that way?

  • no good deed

    Juanita must be the web developer for the ACA.

  • PatriotRG

    Sharptons peeps will ace this question. Common core = common denominator, the left are diluting education so their base (black or white) doesn’t get any ideas about leaving the dependency plantation or getting any ideas aboutthat upward mobility through hard work rubbish.

  • WhoDat

    It seems like it would depend on how many friends she has.

    But, I suck at math, anyway.

    • ObamaFail

      Well, at least you can finally admit you’re a liberal who is bad at math. I mean, you do believe that premiums going up is making insurance more affordable.

    • H50 ✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

      Bet ya dont suck as badly when you have all the info that you need to solve the problem.

  • rambler

    Just training tomorrows leaders…….. they will be even more stupid than the ones we have now.

  • ObamaFail

    That’s the same liberal math that determined this:

    $10 trillion in debt + $7 trillion added to the debt = National Debt cut in half!!!

  • ObamaFail

    Anyone else remember when word problems were like this:
    Susie has 12 apples. There are 20 students in her class. How many more apples does Susie need to make sure everyone can have one?

    • H50 ✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

      Yea, but that was back in the day when you had to get the answer right and children were held back if they couldn’t cut the mustard.

      • ObamaFail

        And back in the “dark ages” when is was okay to teach kids the value of hard work without being accused of child abuse.

        • H50 ✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

          Good times man….good times.

      • WhoDat

        Now we give them trophies and graduate them.

        • ObamaFail

          Just for showing up

        • H50 ✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

          Its important that they feel special and have a full trophy shelf.


    • Michelle ✓classified

      I also recall that with more involved word problems, we were also asked to explain how we came up with our answer. Because back then, it was important to not only know the answer, but to understand how we got that answer.

      • therealguyfaux ✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

        The thing was, sometimes there might be more than one way of coming up with the one right answer– the simplest way would get the top grade, and other ways would get partial credit. It made for having to get the wits a bit keener and for parsimony in the solution and explanation– unlike Washington, where mental sluggishness, overcomplication and bafflegabbing are the coin of the realm.

  • MarcusFenix

    C’mon guys. The answer to the math problem is clearly “orange”. /sarc off

    • H50 ✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

      Of course, how could I not see that!
      How stupid of me!

    • WhoDat

      And pronounced, as several people who came through a drive-thru I once worked at said it, “oinch”

      • MarcusFenix

        That’s only because their Common Core English class was based on how they feeeeeeel the word should be spelled or sound in conversation.

  • j p✓ʳᵉᶠʳᶦᵉᵈ

    Is this a valid answer?
    I don’t know. I’ll tell you the answer when I hear it in the news tomorrow.

  • j p✓ʳᵉᶠʳᶦᵉᵈ

    Yes but the instructions at the heading of the page read:
    Write down how you feel about these questions.

  • Fhalkyn Phoenix

    The green one! George Washington! Pi! “I” before “e” except after “c”! Forty-two!

  • David Maggard

    I think they are looking for the concept of needing a multiple of the # of friends, but its worded clumsily

  • genes ✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

    Bud and Lou do a Common Core math problem.


    • therealguyfaux ✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

      Here’s another good’un:

      “Right now, you’re 40, and the girl is 10– you’re four times as old as she is.
      “Five years from now, you’ll be 45, and she’ll be 15– you’ll be three times as old as she is.
      “Twenty years from now, you’ll be 60, and she’ll be 30– you’ll be twice as old as her.
      “The question is, Lou: How long before she catches up to you?”

  • David Maggard

    Any number of bags where bags*stickers/friends results in an integer, but without knowing how many friends, or stickers per bag( if it is the same per bag ) the only known answer is buy 0 bags and give all her friends 0 stickers each.

  • Brian McChesney

    Any leftover Stickers can be kept by Juanita and not relinquished to the State in forming some sort of silly Social Justice.

  • David Maggard

    And to the people saying 12, you are assuming 4 or 6 bags will divide evenly, if Juanita is unsure which to buy how can we assume that either is right?

  • kindamara

    She doesn’t buy any because, according to the problem, she doesn’t have any friends. The friends in the problem are probably imaginary.

  • Rip_Ford

    It’s a trick question. With a Common Core education, Juanita is doing good to find a part time minimum wage job. She can’t afford to buy stickers much less give them away to other people.

  • Abaraxas

    If Juanita’s friends like their stickers, they can keep their stickers.

  • David Kennett

    This is a tough problem that only a liberal would have the answer. In order not to have any leftovers I would suggest buying 4 since that is the minimum and then if someone is left out to bad. I doubt the liberals would agree. They would want a surplus regardless of the cost so no one feels hurt or disadvantaged. Isn’t it wonderful that our children waste time on this nonsense.

  • Jim Mcreynolds

    She probably shouldn’t give any stickers to her friends so that their content won’t offend any of them……sarcasm meant….

  • $41378716

    Write the equation Juanita must use to find the answer.
    number of stickers (x) divided by number of friends (y)
    add or subtract bags of stickers (z) as needed until all friends have stickers and no stickers remain undistributed.

    It would serve better to have not compounded multiple problems into one instead of all the unknown variables:
    Utterly unclear instructions,
    Unknown number of friends,
    Unknown number of stickers per bag

    Setting kids up for failure is the new “success”. Forward!

  • stuckinIL4now

    Answer depends on how popular she is–does she have 4 friends or 6?

  • Obama my Nigga

    I think the answer must be zero–like princess Obama. That way the government (Juanita) has guaranteed equal outcomes: everybody gets nothing. Just like in every leftist statist udopia.

  • Beto_Ochoa

    Why is she buying any stickers? Why isn’t the correct amount provided?

  • DwellsInFire

    Juanita is a stupid moron is she can’t figure it out for herself. Leave us out of it.

  • InGodITrustAlways

    word just in from Michael Bloomberg… stickers will be banned in NYC. The city can’t assess their salt, fat and fiber content. :(

  • Tessa I.

    The answer, of course, is that this is actually an English problem. How many errors can you find in that paragraph?

  • tops116 ✓Quipper

    Unfortunately, Juanita got beat up in the playground for trying to give kids stickers instead of, y’know, something a kid would want. Normally, the bill for treatment would be negligible, but thanks to Obamacare, the pricing has soared. Coupled the IRS audits for not voting for Obama, the stickers incident was the straw that broke the camel’s back–bankrupting Juanita’s parents.

  • VetOnFire

    Don’t you just Love Socialism?
    Even Your child can be below average.

  • fralopez

    Math is hard…let’s go shopping!

  • Tspeak.us

    The answer is 5124 stickers.

  • radjahshelduck

    Zero bags of stickers. Juanita has no friends because she has bad breath and farts a lot.

  • AZGunslinger

    The real answer is none. Juanita is an illegal alien and all of the stores are monitored by ICE agents so to avoid being deported and missing her part of the “Dream Act” she must avoid the stores.

  • John Howard

    Since Juanita only makes $7.50/hr, she can’t afford to buy any stickers. So she has her boss buy some for the office and she steals a bag to take home every night to give to her friends until they all have one.

  • Artie_Paul

    There literally is no concrete answer. We’re missing two bits of information that are needed to arrive at one correct answer, how many friends & how many stickers in each bag. But because the wording switches between giving “bags” of stickers to her friends and “how many stickers” she should buy, we can’t know what it is she’s actually giving to her friends, bags of stickers or some number of individual stickers from those bags she’s buying. The only thing we know for sure is that regardless of whether she buys 4 or 6 bags, she will have an even number of stickers and therefore she must have an even number of friends to not have any left over. With that, the possibilities are endless. If the question part was consistent with the 1st sentence, it would read “how many BAGS should she buy, 4 or 6? According to that sentence, she wants to give whole bags of stickers, not open the bags and divide them up. In that case it would have to be 4 because she could have either 2, 3, 4, or 6 friends. Buying 6 bags means that if she has only 4 friends she could only give each one bag and would have 2 left over.

  • MPR1776

    Am so glad my girls are all grown up!

  • Saltygi

    assuming all bags equal, buy 4

  • Auton0mous

    If the state’s workers produce 4 bags of stickers, then Juanita needs 4 bags. If the state’s workers produce 6 bags of stickers, then Juanita needs 6 bags. Because, from each according to his means to each according to her needs. Friends are irrelevant.

  • Discochip

    You’d have to axe Barry what his Punahou Chooma gang would do, assuming yer talkin’ about nickle bags, because as I recall Barry used to jump in and take a hit even when it wasn’t his turn. And by the way, if you go look on youtube at some of his Town Hallers, Largo MD is a good one, you’ll see him constantly wiping away imaginary substances from his nose, I counted 21 times during the 55 minuted Largo speech.

  • Nied’s Dead Horse

    Wait! How many friends? How many stickers per bag?

    Since the student is asked to create their own facts, could the answer to the question just as well be “This is bullshit!”? It would be a more factual answer than any other.

  • SRVDisciple

    The answer is 42. The answer is always 42.

    • Ken Alan Draper

      so says the Hitchhiker’s guide.

  • LR99

    O-Ba-Ma! O-Ba-Ma! O-Ba-Ma!

  • Hannibal

    Juanita should just forget about the nickle bags and buy a brick.

  • PunchahippyforJesus


    • http://healthcare.gov/ Scot Harvath

      Another fine product of the Sirius Cybernetics Corporation.

  • PunchahippyforJesus

    You can keep your stickers if you want to.
    Common Core, another product from Big Stupid.

  • aic4ever

    #17 and #18 on the test are both equally as asinine, if not moreso

  • http://crayfisher.wordpress.com/ Myiq2xu™

    The correct answer is eleventy.

  • CLEmom

    ok so math was never my best subject, but don’t you need to know the number of friends. and stickers per bag, to calculate accordingly?

    • 24601

      Only if you’re racist….

      OK, I might have made that up.

  • Alex Zarkadas

    From Idiocracy, the intelligence test given at the jail:

    IPPA Computer: If you have one bucket that contains 2 gallons and another bucket that contains 7 gallons, how many buckets do you have?

    Could very well fit into common core curriculum.

    • 24601

      Except that one actually has a correct answer. The common core version is “One bucket has 2 gallons, the other has 7. How many chickens are next to the cow?”

      • Alex Zarkadas

        You’ve got a valid point there:)

  • CasualMeyhem

    1 bag per friend. or f you like #friends=a so #bags is 1a or some such useless tripe.

  • jakee308

    the answer, of course, is 42.

  • Frustrated Teacher

    The tests are now just assessing student’s ability to figure out what the questions are. It is reaching ridiculous levels in my district and the kids are fed up with it. When half the students Christmas Tree the test (randomly guess for non-educators), then the test is no longer a valid measure of the students’ knowledge. Do that enough and BOOM you have a state mandated test used to evaluate teachers…..

  • Guest

    Surely this is somehow racist.

  • 24601

    What you do is buy one bag of stickers and several empty bags, just in case.

  • Guest

    What grade is this intended for? There are infinitely many correct answers. My wife tells me there is an answer, but it’s an algebraic expression. It’s a matter of finding a common multiple, of which there are infinitely many.

    Of course, that’s not obvious from the wording of the question, which doesn’t seem to understand that people know how many friends they have.

    • Guest

      ‘infinitely many’ LOL

  • EmperorO

    Smallest is 12. But it could also be 24, 36, 48, 60. Terrible word problem. It reminds me of ne the Harvard students had prepped for an afterschool program that also did not make sense. If it takes 10 men 10 days to dig a hole, how long does it take to dig half a hole?…
    Ans. there is no such thing as half a hole. Whenever you start digging you have hole.

  • gjsmith_62

    The stickers were laced with LSD, her name’s not Juanita, but Lucy and the sky’s the limit when you’ve got diamonds.

  • http://steelgeneral.blogspot.com/ Skalla

    Common Core … ensuring our children remain common to the core

  • Brad Anderson

    Maybe one should just re-word the question to understand it better.
    Juanita Buys Bags of things all of the time. In this particular case, Juanita wants to purchase some bags of stickers. Juanita’s favorite numbers are 4 and 6. Juanita ALWAYS buys bags of things in quantities of either 4 or 6 (It is a form of OCD, Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder). Juanita has a group of friends. Juanita always wants to be fair to everyone in her group of friends. Juanita, being the kind of person she is, wants to give ‘Bags of Stickers’ to her friends and would even be willing to make multiple trips to the store in order to purchase more “Bags of Stickers” in quantities of either 4 or 6 so that all of her friends will have many, But Juanita is willing to settle for giving an equal amount of “Individual Stickers” to each of her friends out of either only the 4 or 6 bags of stickers she purchases during the one and only trip she makes to the store – BUT – Keep in mind, After Juanita distributes the stickers amongst her friends, there will eventually be no more stickers left to give. Without knowing how many stickers are in each bag – AND – Without knowing how many friends Juanita has – Should Juanita purchase 4 or 6 bags of stickers? Well, Let “X” equal the number of friends Juanita has and Let “Y” equal the number of stickers in each bag to form the following equation: How many “X” Friends will Juanita have and “Y”? —- No – seriously – this sounds like a poorly worded word problem, or minimal Information problem, or whatever. It sounds as if the ANSWER ITSELF could be in an “Equation Form” with Unknown variables. (Maybe a “Systems” Equation of some kind). It is Not difficult to make errors in math. This could just be an innocent mistake in the form of a poorly-written word problem. This may have been written by someone who might not yet have a good grasp of the English language. – OR – and I HOPE NOT – This could be Deliberately Mis-Written to allow the Instructor to decide whatever interpretation is correct – based on whoever should be given a right or wrong answer.

  • http://healthcare.gov/ Scot Harvath

    Juanita wants to have ṡex with a transvestíte and a lesbían single mom. To get an even number of abortíons, how many ounces of weed could she smoke?

  • Part138

    If this is what the Common Core math books are like, I shudder to think what’s in their English and History books!

  • Axelgreaser


  • doowleb

    The answer is zero.
    All her friends would receive the same amount and there would be none left over.

  • Dave Mears

    a) It starts off saying she wants to give bags of stickers to each friend. We’ll assume she isn’t buying any stickers for herself, though nothing in the text indicates this is the case. When it says she wants to give the same number of stickers to each friend, logically, that means she has at least two friends. If we do a close reading of (bags) then we could take from it that she wants to give at least 2 bags to each friend, as ‘bags’ is plural, and they could have said ‘a bag’ or ‘at least one bag.’ Never does it say how many bags she wishes to give, but >=2 fits the precise text.

    b) it says she wants to give the same number of STICKERS to each friend, not the same number of bags of stickers. Then it occurs to me, it’s an assumption that each bag contains the same number of stickers, which was not stated and thus not definitively true. If the number of stickers in the bags are different, the question is unanswerable due to a strict lack of data. We’ll assume it has an answer, and thus that the bags are of the same size.

    c) since her unsureness is over if she needs 4 or 6 bags of stickers, that means she has either 2 or 3 friends, as we established above that she wants to give no less than 2 bags per friend.

    d) assuming the bags are of the same size, and given the data, we know she has either 2 or 3 friends, if she had 2 either 4 or 6 would be correct. It doesn’t say she’s trying to minimize her purchase. if she was assumed rational it would indicate 4 or 6 would fit her need, meaning she had 2 friends, which would be the heart of her quandary. “Should they get 3 each, or only 2?” she asks. In which case, both would be correct answers, since it doesn’t say she’s trying to minimize her purchase. Both 4 and 6 would be correct as far as the number of bags. I doubt they’d give a question with two correct (given) answers, – which is an assumption about the test writers, and thus unknowable – which means she probably actually has 3 friends, which means the number from the set given should be 6. of bags.

    the answer in number of bags is thus {the set of all positive multiples of 3, greater than or equal to 6.} if you wanted to be fancy, you could add in “up until she ran out of money or the store ran out of bags of stickers, whichever happened first.” though as it offered 4 or 6, we’ll just say 6 for convenience.

    e) if she has 3 friends for whom she wishes to buy at least 2 bags of stickers then she will need to buy 6 bags of stickers. But the difficulty is it doesn’t ask how many bags of stickers she needs to buy, it asks how many STICKERS. Which means to answer the question properly, you’d need to know how many stickers were in a bag, which it doesn’t give you.

    conclusion) I don’t think they really intended grade-schoolers to employ quite that much logic, so it’s probably incomplete as written.

    That said, it should give you the number of friends, since the number of friends is known (to her), and it should ask for an answer in bags of stickers, not in stickers, generally being consistent in the use of units. I imagine the writer of this question was well into his second bottle of cold medicine and the editors looked at it and went, “eww, word problems.” and ignored it outright.

    • Oysteria

      Dude, you got an up-vote just for your sticktuitiveness.

      The answer is obviously not simply a number. Underneath the problem there are two lines, whereas underneath other problems there is only one line.

      That’s it! There are two answers! Or three, if you write small.

    • Brad Anderson

      Well Dave, you make some very good observations. I might also add – The grade-schoolers Might be required to assign variables to the problem.
      x = Number of friends, y = Number of stickers per bag (assuming all bags have an equal number of stickers), z = Number of stickers in total, n = number of bags (Given supposedly 4 or 6) or as in Multiples 4n or 6n. Given 0 = number of remaining stickers after distribution. (BUT – Possibly along the lines of an inequality, such that “Least amount of stickers remaining (assigned as “r”)” & not necessarily “0” – Stickers remaining are Less than the number of friends. which means r = 0 or < x) Total number of stickers is z = 6y or z = 4y, OR z = 6ny or z = 4ny. And without trying to over-analyze Juanita's predicament, the problem wants a solution as to the following: How many stickers COULD she buy so there are No Stickers left over? Well, how much are the individual Bags of stickers and how much money does Juanita have? – or how much, out of the money Juanita has, is she willing to spend? Now that differs from the question of how many stickers WOULD she buy so there are No stickers left over? = What type of person is Juanita?-(a judgment call). – or – How many stickers SHOULD she buy so there are No stickers left over? = What type of friends does Juanita have?-(again, a judgment call). I think this particular problem might require other variables which relate to, not-so-much an Over-analysis, but perhaps variables more in relation to how embarrassing problem solvers are, in their willingness to try to understand what Might have been the intention of the author of this particular problem that he, or she, has described Juanita as having had encountered. E = degree of embarrassment. 0 <= E < or equal to the impossibility of being infinitely ashamed.

  • Brother bob

    The answer is she jumps off the cliff and die

  • Bill Dalasio

    Well, they’ve rotted the minds of the nation’s youth when it comes to the humanities, I guess the process is just playing catch-up in the STEM fields.

  • Thomas

    This could get quite complex considering Juanita has just one non-imaginary friend. The rest are well, imaginary ones and that number fluctuates depending upon if she is staying with her two moms, her two dads or the court-appointed guardian who is from Saudia Arabia and he has seven wives. What was the question again?

    • Thomas

      Breaking News: Juanita was a victim of the knockout game while at recess and died at the hospital this evening. Couselors will be at the school tomorrow passing out stickers, if they can figure out an absolute answer.

      • native son


  • Christopher Adams

    My wife said these type of questions are asked but there’s information in the directions I like “What is the missing information needed to solve this problem?”
    Still bogus because at that age they need to just memorize and know how to solve a math problem not know why the math problem is wrong!

  • $25753324

    Scrap Obamacare AND Common Core.

  • Zathras11 @B5

    It says she WANTS to buy stickers. She isn’t required to buy anything. So she should buy NONE and this way nobody is left out, and there are no extra stickers (that she presumably gets stuck with.

  • Ranba_Ral

    My sister (an early childhood teacher) just showed me the Common Core division strategy she had to teach the kids she was subbing the other day. It requires taking stab-in-the-dark guesses, multiplying the guess by the divisor, subtracting that from the dividend, rinse repeat, until your divisor won’t go into the result anymore; then adding all the guesses together, with the remainder being the left over number. It works, it just takes forever and requires just pulling numbers out of your rear. Her example (127/3=x) ended up taking an entire sheet of paper with the wild guesses she was making to simulate what was going on in the class.

    The amount of paper you use is entirely dependent on how accurate each guess is. She said they kept asking if they were doing it right, and she’d do it traditional “long-division” style and only use a few lines of paper to check. It was blowing the kids’ minds that she could solve it that short and easily.

  • jeanie6

    Easy. Juanita has been deported, problem solved.

  • Guest

    Juanita has 2 friends. If she had 3 friends there would be no reason to consider purchasing 4 bags. BECAUSE she wants to GIVE BAGS (Plural) of stickers to her 2 friends, she must choose to purchase either 4 or 6 bags to put the stickers in. We will solve for either scenario of 4 or 6 bags purchased. The number of stickers (Plural) to purchase FOR EACH BAG will be 2 or more. THUS, Let “Z” equal the unknown amount of stickers in addition to at least 2 For EACH BAG Given by Juanita – the amount will be represented as (2 + Z). Realizing, (Z >/= 0). Let “Y” equal the number of stickers given to each of her 2 friends. Y = 2 + Z Let “X” equal the Total number of stickers purchased.
    We have established “Z” and (2 + Z) where Z>/= 0 and we have also established the following: Y = 2 + Z . Thus, X = 4(2 + Z) or X = 6(2 + Z) also expressed as X = 4Y or X = 6Y. BECAUSE we are solving for the “Total Number of Stickers Purchased” (with no extras purchased), then we solve for “X” number of stickers. Juanita could buy the variable “X” amount of stickers for her 2 friends in either 2 bags each (if she buys 4 bags at the store), or 3 bags each (if she buys 6 bags at the store). Thus & Finally, I would suppose the answer, in this interpretation, should be the algebraic equation of either X = 4Y or X = 6Y. (The number of stickers Juanita is to buy is the variable “X” and no extra).

    • Brad Anderson

      ****Let “Y” equal the number of stickers IN EACH BAG given to each of her two friends. Y = 2 + Z.

  • Tommy Fowble

    There isn’t an answer to this question. There are 2 unknowns: how many friends she’s buying stickers for, and how many stickers are in each bag. You can’t even flip a coin as to whether 4 or 6 bags is the correct answer, since the question asks how many individual stickers should be purchased.

    It seems as though they want kids to make educated guesses. Math is precise, so how about focusing on the basics before asking them to pull numbers out of the air?

    Oh wait…I get it now. How else are they supposed to “prove” Global Climate Change is a real and man made issue?

  • ScarlettNY

    The answer is zero, stickers are not covered under SNAP benefits.

  • abe

    Anybody that knows anything Knows the answer is “42!”

  • Brad Anderson

    Juanita has 2 friends. If she had 3 friends there would be no reason to consider purchasing 4 bags. – You take it from there. Bag(s).

  • Thomas Dobbins

    OBVIOUSLY, this is Bush’s FAULT!

    • Rosenmops

      …and you are a racist. /s

  • robert anthony

    How is she buying anything?….Dimorats won’t let kids sell lemonade or mistletoe to make an honest buck. Is she one of those ACORN-approved underage prostitutes?

  • robert anthony

    Sandra Fluke needs condoms…but she doesn’t know whether to buy $3,000 worth or have you pay for them…what should she do so no Frat guys are left out?

  • BobSmith937

    Is Juanita a White Hispanic?

  • verytari

    I loathe Commie Core, but I don’t mind this question. Answer is 24 or any multiple thereof. Divisible by both 4 and 6.

    • John Darden

      Agree. But it should’ve been worded better in one regard. Such as saying Juanita wants to give one bag of stickers to each of her friends, but does not know if 4 or 6 friends will arrive. That way, the reader knows how many bags will be allocated to each friend.

      Oh I forgot … [Insert anti-liberal rant here]. Yada Yada Yada.

  • John Darden

    The answer is open-ended with multiple correct answers, as evidenced by the use of “could” in the question. The number of stickers in each bag is supposed to remain unknown because Juanita does not yet know how many bags there will be. All that is to be known is how many total stickers does she begin with. The smallest correct number to allow no extra stickers regardless there being 4 or 6 bags is TWELVE. That is, if there are 4 bags, each bag will have 3 stickers. If there are 6 bags, each will have 2 stickers. Other correct answers are any number divisible by both 4 and 6.

    It’s a poorly worded question, as many of them are.

  • http://www.facebook.com/aemoreira81 aemoreira81

    How do you get an answer of 7? That is as bad as the question. 12 makes sense, as does 24. The question could have been made good by adding “minimum”, “fewest”, or something to that end.

  • Jeffrey Lamela

    And another generation of morons will be created.

  • Evelyn

    As a former teacher, I’m glad Michelle is ‘all over’ the CC….No other pundits seem to care or understand it.

  • Abaraxas

    I hate to say it, but there actually is a correct answer and the question does make sense.

    The variable is the number of friends (X). She has the choice of either 4 or 6 bags (number of stickers in each unknown but we’ll assume each bag has the same amount) according to the instructions so the answer is either of those. The challenge is to make sure that no matter what X is, there are no stickers left.

    If X is an even number, 4 or 6 will work.
    If X is an odd number, only 6 will work.

    The correct answer is 6. No matter what X is, 6 will have an amount divisible by that without any remainder.

    • Abaraxas

      This is called a ‘Fair Division’ type problem and is standard in pre algebra.

    • John Darden

      The assumption is that each friend receives one bag… it’s a lowest common denominator question.

      So if you’re saying she has 13 friends, 6 bags of however many stickers in each will be divisible and not leave extras? Nope.

      • Abaraxas

        The question presents three rules. 1. Either 4 or 6 bags are purchased. 2. Each friend gets an equal number of stickers. 3. There is none left over. Anything
        higher than 2-3 friends, then you divide the stickers in the bags but
        still with the same result (no matter if there are an odd or even number
        of stickers in the bag, from 2 to infinity (because ‘stickers’ is
        plural in the question, we have to assume each bag has more than one
        sticker in it). More info here: http://www.colorado.edu/education/DMP/fair_division.html

        • John Darden

          We’re determining how many stickers, not bags. Question states we’re giving bags of stickers, not stickers, to the friends. If she buys 6 stickers, then if she ends up with 4 bags, she would have 2 stickers left over (given one sticker per bag.. equal number per bag). Thus, it’s a LCD problem.

          • Abaraxas

            Bags are just groupings of stickers. They are divisible amounts.

        • Ricard

          “2. Each friend gets an equal number of stickers.”

          Actually, they way I read it, each friend gets a number of whole bags of stickers, not a partial bag.

          I’ll ask my pre-algebra-teaching (honors) wife if your assumption about this being a standard question is correct.

        • Ricard

          …oh…and if there are 6 stickers in each of the 6 bags (for a total of 36 stickers), and you have 7 friends, your answer doesn’t work.

    • James Taylor

      You can’t get an answer because you don’t know what size the bags would be or how many stickers they’d hold.

  • PunchahippyforJesus

    $17 trillion…..

  • Always Vigilant

    Any way you cut it, there’s no major difference between today’s liberals and their communist ancestors.

  • native son

    What really gets me laughing hysterically about this is there are dumb asses really trying to find an answer to a problem that would obviously cause confusion in most school age children. Here you have grown people having problems agreeing on an answer that may not even be there. If you gave 100 people a flu shot and 50% of them had on hats, how many of them were over the age of 30? Math isn’t about common sence, it’s about facts. Without all of the information all you can hope to do is “guess” correctly.

  • MissV

    Ok, here’s an answer that makes sense to me. I didn’t come up with it. You don’t need to know how many friends she has – just find the number of stickers that will fit into either 4 or 6 bags equally. Thoughts?

    “the question basically is “How many stickers do you need to fill 4 or 6 bags with nothing left over?”
    One of the difficulties to helping someone with their homework or test questions is context. The way our educational system works is that we teach a small number of techniques and tools, and then test the students understanding (especially in math and science). Rinse and repeat. At the end of the year/term/semester/whatever, there is a final that reviews a broader swath. Without the context of the lesson that is being taught, problems like this become much more difficult. Looking at the restated problem, the lesson being taught is probably Least Common Multiple – a the lowest number which two other numbers are both a factor of. With 12 stickers, the LCM of 4 and 6, 3 would go into 4 bags, or 2 would go into 6 bags with nothing left over. A student, who earlier in the week had lessons and practice problems on finding the LCM, would probably pretty easily recognize that the technique is required here.

    Also, this thread reminded me the song New Math by Tom Lehrer, written in the early 1960s” haha.



    • MyronJPoltroonian

      “But the piano’s been drinking.”

    • John Darden

      You’ve got it 100% here. If you look at the whole workbook where this problem is pulled from, you can clearly see that a large number of them involve finding the LCM. I think the wording could’ve been improved a bit, but otherwise it is not as far out there as you’d expect given the context of where it originates.

      • Nate Whilk

        Given that the subject was LCM, these problems are perfectly understandable. In fact, these are the first math problems from Common Core I’ve seen that actually are reasonable!

        Did you learn to add and subtract fractions and had to find the lowest common denominator? The LCD is really the same as the LCM.

        Example: 1/4 + 1/6 = ?
        To add, you have to find the lowest common denominator. I’ll just give it and leave the work as an exercise for the reader. :)

        1/4 + 1/6 = 3/12 + 2/12 = 5/12

        And there’s a simple way to find it, too. Multiply the divisors, then divide by the greatest common divisor. And Euclid developed an easy procedure to find the GCD https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Greatest_common_divisor#Using_Euclid.27s_algorithm. They didn’t teach that when I was in school. We had to get it by inspection and logic.

  • Ned Weatherby

    Easy. She should buy four bags. She either has 4 or 6 friends. Once she hands out the bags to only four of her possible six friends, she will only have 4 friends, as the two left out will no longer be her friends.

    This is the type of idiocy teachers and students are supposed to deal with, thanks to Government meddling. Common core has caused districts to fire teachers, making classroom sizes larger, and hire more “administrators” to micro-manage the teachers.

    This is classic government in action.

  • captlou

    She waits for Obama to pay more than a Trillion $$ more for additional stickers. That way his Debt level is an even 18 Trillion.

  • Roark Barraclough

    Solve for X

  • G21

    The intellectual vanguard of today’s liberalism – Sunstein, Orszag, Seidman, etc. – is 100% Bolshevik.

  • Brandon

    The fact that anyone finds this confusing, even out of context, combined with the fact that half the comments here are blaming Marxism or Obama makes me very worried for the future of the US.