This first grader’s math problem is baffling the internet

A six-year-old recently brought home a math problem and it’s completely confusing people all over the internet.

Penn Holderness is a first grader from North Carolina and his parents recently took to Facebook after they were puzzled by his latest sheet of maths homework.

“Internet friends: solve this 1st grade math homework #showyourwork #mybrainhurts,” they wrote.

Here’s the problem they posted.


We know that common core is supposed to teach students how to think about math but this problem is driving adults who studied math for years completely crazy.

“What purpose does this serve in life? Whatever happened to normal math homework,” one commenter wrote.

Another joked: “What the heck? I am not smarter than a first grader.”

A few people responded that the answer is a missing letter J (14.)

One smart commenter wrote: “You add diagonally and subtract across and down to get the missing number of 14 (J).”

That commenter even included their work.


I’m convinced the answer is porcupine and you can’t convince me otherwise.