Can you solve this impossible Year 2 maths problem?

Allison Yee

Thought you had troubles in Year 12 maths? Well, it looks like schools have really upped the ante after one mum was left completely stumped by a maths question her Year 2 daughter was meant to answer.

Angie Werner shared the tricky question in a Facebook group, after she and her daughter Ayla struggled to find the answer.

 "There are 49 dogs signed up to compete in the dog show,” the question read.

This problem isn't as easy as it looks... Photo: Facebook/Angie Werner

“There are 36 more small dogs than large dogs signed up to compete. How many small dogs are signed up to compete?"

At first glance, it seems the answer is pretty simple – 49 dogs minus 36 small dogs means there’s 13 large dogs. Thirteen large dogs means there’s 36 small dogs.

Sorry, but that isn’t quite right.

If this is a Year 2 question, we'd hate to see what the kids get in high school. Photo: Getty

For those who prefer equations, Little Things have helpfully set out how to work out the problem.

Think of large dogs as ‘x’ and small dogs as ‘y’.

49 = x+y and y = x+36

Combine the two equations and you get:

49 = x + x+36

49 = 2x+36

13 = 2x

x = 6.5

y = 42.5

Source: Giphy

That’s right, this maths equation results in half a dog.

With Ayla taught by a substitute teacher during that class who didn’t grade the papers, it was days before Angie was put out of her misery and told the right answer.

"The district worded it wrong," the mum told Popsugar. "The answer would be 42.5, though, if done at an age appropriate grade."

Got a story tip? Send it to

Want more celebrity, entertainment and lifestyle news? Follow Be on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Tumblr and Instagram