This Math Question Meant For Kids Has The Internet Stumped
Facebook user, Kenneth Jianwenz , recently got the Internet collectively scratching their heads after posting a logic exercise some outlets reported was meant for 5th graders in Singapore. The problem, which originally appeared in an exam for the Singapore and Asean Schools Math Olympiads, asks test takers to figure out when Cheryl's birthday is based on info she gave to new friends Albert and Bernard.
As the question explains, Cheryl gave both of them a list of 10 possible dates, but only Albert has the correct month and Bernard the day.
Albert then says he doesn't know when the festivities are, but he's also certain Bernard doesn't know either. Based on what Albert just said, Bernard reveals he now knows her special day. Albert then says he just realized it as well. What is going on?!
If you're trying to solve it for yourself, don't read on just yet. If you're ready for the answer, here's the breakdown.
First, keep in mind both guys can see the list of 10 dates, but only Al (we're calling him Al now) has the right month, and Bernard has the right day. Al says he doesn't know her birthday based on the info he has, but he knows the same goes for Bernard. Why? The dates range from 14 to 19, and the only ones appearing once are 18 and 19. If Bernard was given either of those dates, he would know the birthday. Since Al knows Bernard doesn't know the birthday, that means the monthis notMay or June. (Still with me?) That eliminates all the May and June dates leaving us with July 14, July 16, August 14, August 15 and August 17.
Bernard then says he, at first, didn't know Cheryl's big day, but now he does. So Bernard must have been given a date that only appears once on the list of remaining five. That knocks out July 14th and August 14, leaving us with July 16, August 15 and August 17.
Al chimes in again and has it figured out as well. That eliminates both dates in August because if Al was given that month, he still would not have been able to solve the problem. So...the answer is July 16.
Do you get all that? (Don't worry; we had to look up the answer too!) If it makes you feel better, Jianwenz recently posted to explain that the riddle is actually a Secondary 3 question (when kids are typically ),nota fifth-grade equation as many news sites have reported.
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