Chapter 617 Wondrous math problem from the Previous World!
In the classroom.
Zhang Ye put down Chenchen's workbook and patted on her shoulder before asking her, "How long have you been standing for? Sit down first, I know what is going on."
Chenchen nodded, then sat down and rubbed her legs vigorously.
Li Jiaxing who did not agree to this, said, "Sir, this is a school and I'm the teacher currently teaching this lesson. At school, students should listen to teachers, and since she did not apologize yet, I'm not going to let her to sit down!"
Zhang Ye retorted, "What if I feel that she does not need to apologize?"
Li Jiaxing stared at him and never thought that a student's guardian would speak to him in such a manner. This place was Beijing's No. 2 Experimental Primary School and one should know just what kind of a school it was to be named as such. It was one of the key focus primary schools in the city with lots of people and parents vying hard to send their children here. Which parent did not treat the teachers here with courtesy and politeness when they saw them? Even if it hadn't been a key focus primary school, in any normal school, the students' parents would never talk to a teacher in this way. Li Jiaxing shouted, "Then take your child back home! If you have the capability and ability, you can teach her yourself! There's no need for her to come to school!"
Chenchen unexpectedly replied, "My uncle can teach better than you."
"You!" Li Jiaxing was getting mad!
What a terrible child!
And what a terrible guardian!
This was exactly a case of what type of a general would lead what kind of a soldier! How the child turned out depended on what kind of a guardian you were! I was still wondering why this child was so unbearing! It's simply because the guardian was also the same!
The surrounding teachers were also speaking in whispers.
"What sort of a guardian is that?"
"He's too protective of the child."
"Right, this child has been spoiled by him."
"Why do I feel that Chenchen's guardian looks a little familiar to me?"
"I don't know, I don't recognize him at all. I've never seen him at the past parent-teacher meeting sessions either. I only remember a woman who goes by the surname, Rao, the one who is very pretty but spoke in an expressionless manner."
"Oh, I remember her."
"Ai, the parents these days really have a problem educating their children!"
"She even thinks that her uncle can teach better than Teacher Li? Hur hur, Teacher Li is our highest qualified mathematics teacher in No. 2 Experimental Primary School. If he hadn't offended someone at the high school he was teaching in, he would not have been dismissed and ended up teaching at a primary school."
Many of the teachers from the other grades also came to take a look at the commotion happening between guardian and teacher, pointing at them as they observed and talked.
It was probably only the form teacher, Zhao Mei, who knew the meaning of Chenchen's previous sentence. She has paid attention to the news of Zhang Ye before and knew about her uncle's background rather well. When Zhao Mei saw that the situation was getting a little out of control, and afraid that it would alarm the school leaders or media, leading to a bigger mess, she immediately tried to smooth over the situation by saying to Zhang Ye, "Teacher Zhang, this matter is actually..."
Li Jiaxing interrupted and asked, "Teacher Zhang? What a coincidence, you're also a teacher?"
Zhang Ye smiled and said, "You could say so."
Li Jiaxing stared at him and asked, "What subject do you teach?"
What subject did I teach? Zhang Ye replied, "In the past, I could be considered as having taught mathematics."
Once those words were said, a lot of the surrounding teachers of No. 2 Experimental Primary School were stunned. This was a conflict between people who were both on the same side? 1 That's coincidental? You're also a math teacher?
Upon hearing that, Li Jiaxing got even angrier and said, "Since we are in the same field and teach mathematics, then as a teacher, you should understand better that a student should unconditionally listen and carry out a teacher's teachings. We won't harm the students since we are carrying out the work of teaching others. If you are also a teacher, you should be guiding the child on how to have the correct learning attitude and not spoiling the child like this!" He paused for a while and asked, "Which school do you teach at? What grade do you teach? Primary school? Junior high?"
Zhang Ye smiled and said, "Let's not talk about which school I taught at first. Just now, I found what you said not to my liking, and it was the word 'unconditionally.' Perhaps we have a different understandings, but to me, other than family love, there is nothing in the world that is unconditional. If my child is in the wrong, I will criticize her. For example, like today, Chenchen's attitude towards her teacher is indeed problematic. I will go back and teach her about it. But at the same time, the reason I don't think that my child should apologize is because I feel that you have the same problem. If a teacher makes a mistake, should the students unconditionally follow and do what they're told? I don't think so, because not even a teacher has such privilege!"
What did he say?
Li Jiaxing said, "I'm in the wrong? Where did I do wrong? During lunchtime, I was talking about yesterday's homework when I pointed to Chenchen to answer a question. After that, I explained about the question in detail, but I was wrong?"
The other teachers were all speechless looking at Zhang Ye.
Zhang Ye pointed to Chenchen's textbook and said, "I've seen this math problem and its solving process. It's not wrong; the steps and the answers are correct too."
"Then you..." Before Li Jiaxing could finish, he was already rebuked by Zhang Ye's next words.
Zhang Ye said, "But when I meant that it was correct, that is in the case of the question being targeted at adults. Actually, I can ask all of the students right now." He turned around and faced the class. Waving the textbook in his hand, he asked, "Earlier during lunchtime, did you all really understand Teacher Li's calculation and the train of thought in solving this math problem?"
Actually, Li Jiaxing had also written the solution on the whiteboard.
Listening to Chenchen's guardian talking as though he knew what he was saying, all the teachers, including Zhao Mei, looked at the whiteboard, but were unable to see anything wrong with it.
"What's the problem?"
"Is there a problem in this question?"
"The final answer is nine, so it's correct."
"This problem does not even need to be calculated."
"Just separate them out, then the problem will be solved?"
All of the teachers were confused.
At this moment, a girl who was not on friendly terms with Chenchen raised her hand and said, "I understand it! Teacher Li explained it very well! I can understand all of it!"
Zhang Ye pointed to the whiteboard and asked, "Then can you explain how to do the separation for this step?"
The girl was a little stunned and blinked for a long time but did not say anything.
After that, a little boy said, "I...I also don't understand."
Then, more students gradually said the same.
"I don't understand it as well."
"I managed to get the final answer but I don't know why I must separate the numbers that way."
"Yes, me too."
Li Jiaxing was a little shocked by this. He said, "Didn't you all say that you understood when I finished explaining the question just now! Why is it now that all of you suddenly don't understand it? Yes, this question is quite difficult for a second grade student, but I've already explained the steps required to solve this and written out the solution very clearly, so what do you all not understand about it?"
A little boy lowered his head and explained his reason, "Earlier, when I saw all the other classmates saying they understood it, I also nodded along with them, but actually, I did not understand it."
Zhang Ye said, "See, the other children also did not understand, but only Chenchen spoke the truth."
Li Jiaxing helplessly said, "It's fine if you don't understand it, I can explain it again to everyone. This time, I hope everyone will be more serious and attentive!"
Zhang Ye interrupted, "But have you thought about it before, Teacher Li? It might not be that the children were not attentive, but that your solving process and train of thought to the question was problematic instead?"
Li Jiaxing laughed in extreme anger, "There's a problem with my explanation?"
Zhang Ye said, "Yes."
Li Jiaxing said, "Then why don't you tell me, where did I teach incorrectly?"
Suddenly, news of the commotion made its way to the school leaders and several leaders of the No. 2 Experimental Primary School had arrived at the classroom entrance, bringing two security guards along with them.
The vice-principal entered and asked, "What happened? Whose parent is causing trouble here?"
Zhao Mei hurriedly went up and explained, "It's just a misunderstanding, there's no trouble at all." Then, she explained about Zhang Ye and Li Jiaxing's reason for their disagreement.
The school leaders were left speechless for a while when they heard that. They were wondering from where in the countryside this guardian had came from. He tried to argue about a math problem with a mathematics teacher? They also saw the question on the whiteboard and wondered: what could be the problem with it since it was such a simple question? He was also a teacher? He's even a mathematics teacher? Then his standard must really be a joke. Even the two security guards, who did not seemed well-educated, after looking at the question, also looked at Chenchen's guardian despisingly.
And then Zhang Ye spoke in an indifferent tone, "Teacher Li, I don't doubt your mathematics standard, I only said that your train of thought in teaching might have some problems. You were a teacher at a high school previously?"
Li Jiaxing said, "Correct."
The vice-principal frowned and added, "Teacher Li also holds a master's and is a scholar from Tianjin Normal University, yet you are saying that Teacher Li's standard is not good enough?"
"A master's? Majored in higher mathematics? Indeed, he is very good." Zhang Ye smiled and said, "Let me put it this way, everyone might not understand if I just say it like this. Since I'm also a math teacher, then let me pose a problem now for everyone to try to solve, then there might be an answer to the problems I brought up, OK?"
Zhao Mei said, "This..."
One of the school leaders decided to speak up first, thinking that this student's guardian was trying to challenge the authority of their teachers and creating trouble. That wouldn't do, so this matter had to be solved today no matter what. He said, "Sure, since the subject for this class now is still math anyway."
Li Jiaxing could only think, You still want to set a question for me, even though I have a master's? He didn't know whether to laugh or cry. Then, he said, "Fine, pose the problem. Is it calculus? Functions? Or equations?"
Zhang Ye waved his hand with a smile and said, "No, it's just a simple elementary math question."
When they heard this, the teachers went into an uproar.
"Elementary math question?"
"Are you teasing Teacher Li?"
"Why do you even need to give an elementary math question? Even a fool could do it!"
"Teacher Li has a master's from a well-known school!"
Zhang Ye walked towards the whiteboard and said, "I heard the teachers' saying that even a fool could do it? Hur hur, that might not be so. Anyway, I'm going to pose the problem now."
Zhang Ye found a black marker and began to write out the problem on the whiteboard.
This problem of course did not exist in this world, because this world's current education and syllabus had differed slightly with Zhang Ye's previous world. In Zhang Ye's previous world, this set of problems was very famous, and had for a time, caused a commotion and heated discussions all over the internet. Essentially, this was really an elementary math question and had appeared in a elementary math topic before. But any adults who had seen it before would give it the nickname:
-The wondrous math problem!
Today, Zhang Ye would display it here as he wanted to make the people from this world widen their horizons!
1. The flood dashes against the Temple of the Dragon King; a two-part allegorical saying, of which the first part, always stated, is descriptive, while the second part, sometimes unstated, carries the message.