This Math Question For Class 5 Students In China Has Stumped Adults

The question is correct but what about its answer?

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This Math Question For Class 5 Students In China Has Stumped Adults

An education department has defended the question saying it examines a student's critical awareness.

The world is divided into two kinds of people - those who love Math and those who don't. And this question meant for fifth graders in China will either reinstate your love for the subject, or make you hate it even more. But chances are you won't be able to look away from it until you've given it some thought.

11-year-olds at a primary school in China's Shunqing were asked to answer a question that many online have termed unsolvable, reports BBC. "If a ship had 26 sheep and 10 goats onboard, how old is the ship's captain?" asks the question. Pictures of the question have since created quite a stir on Chinese social media as many have been left utterly confused about the answer.
 
math question china

Before you think there was a misprint on the exam paper or that the question is incomplete, let us tell you, the question is absolutely fine. In fact, officials of an education department have defended the question saying it examines a student's critical awareness and ability to think independently, reports BBC.

The question received a varied number of answers from students as translated by South China Morning Post:  

"The captain should be at least 18 years old because a minor is not allowed by law to operate a vessel," offered one student. "The captain is 36 years old. He is quite narcissistic, so the number of animals corresponds to his age," suggested another. "We cannot be sure of the captain's age. The number of the sheep and goats is irrelevant to the captain's age," concluded a third.

A Weibo user also offered this explanation for the question, reports BBC: "The total weight of 26 sheep and 10 goat is 7,700kg, based on the average weight of each animal. In China, if you're driving a ship that has more than 5,000kg of cargo you need to have possessed a boat license for five years. The minimum age for getting a boat's license is 23, so he's at least 28."

So can you solve this question without losing your marbles? Tell us using the comments section below.
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