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Every now and then, as a teacher, you get the thrill of seeing a student GET IT.

When it happens, you rejoice.

Today I rejoiced.

We were working on conditional statements, converse statements, and biconditional statements.  One of the examples I used with the class went thusly:

A teenager is a person who is over 12 years old.  Write the three statements and determine if this is a valid definition.  If it isn’t give a counter-example.

When I asked for a volunteer to read their answers one young lady volunteered immediately.

If you are a teenager then you are older than 12.
If you are older than 12 then you are a teenager.
You are a teenager if and only if you are older than 12.
This is false.  I’m older than 12 and I’m not a teenager.

Very good.  But how old are you anyway?

I’m 19.

But you just said you weren’t a teenager.

I’m not.

(confused look from the teacher) Huh?  What do you mean you aren’t a teenager?

I don’t live with my parents anymore.  I have an apartment.

(confused look from the teacher continues)  What does that have to do with it?

Teenagers live with their parents.

But, you’re nineTEEN.  That makes you a TEENager.

(light bulb illuminates)  OH!  That’s what TEENage means!  OH!  I am still a teenager!  Cool, I thought I was like getting old.

At least they’re learning sumthin’…


  1. That is a priceless moment! 🙂

  2. Hahahaha

  3. Ha! That made me smile…

  4. You also are a teenager if you’re not embarrassed to finally “get” a concept as simple as nine-TEEN, for goodness sake!

  5. I have no response to that. I’m glad you were there for her eureka moment.

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