Many people hate math because you have to make a lot of mistakes to learn it. The fact is, making mistakes doesn’t “feel good.” When we get a math problem or a puzzle correct, the brain releases chemicals that feel good. Making mistakes affects our self-confidence, and not in a good way. Can you work the puzzle below? To understand the answer, it helped to talk with some math teachers. If you don’t know the answer, scroll down past the image and we’ll tell you how to solve it.
The math problem is: 50 + 50 – 25 x 0 + 2 + 2 = ?
To solve the problem, you have to make some assumptions. For one thing, the problem is missing an essential thing that we’re accustomed to seeing: some parentheses. But it’s solvable without the handy parentheses.
To help you remember it, you can also remember this handy acronym.
So with that help, here’s how you would solve the problem. The answers people give are all over the place, but there is a correct answer. It’s math, after all.
Here are the basic principles:
1. First, do what’s in the parentheses (in this situation, there are none).
2. Second, do the exponents (again, there are none).
3. Third, do any multiplication or division (whichever comes first) from left to right (-25 x 0 =0).
4. Now you have 50+50-0+2+2.
5. Next, do the addition and subtraction from left to right, 50+50 = 100.
6. That leaves you with 100-0+2+2.
7. This gives you the correct answer of 104.