Monday, May 30, 2011

From an Indonesian Student

I am a Junior High School student in Jakarta. I am 12 years old now. I like solving maths word problems. I have a maths word problem that I cannot solve by myself.

In a housing estate there are 1000 couples.
2 / 3 of the husbands who are taller than their wives are also heavier.
3 / 4 of the husbands who are heavier than their wives are also taller.
If there are 120 wives who are taller and heavier than their husbands, how many husbands are taller than their wives ?

I think the solution is 1000 - 120 = 880 husbands who are taller than their wives.
However, I am confused by the second and the third sentences in the word problem.

Made, 12-year old student in Indonesia

Yeap Ban Har writes: Let's start by assuming that a couple is made up of a husband and a wife. You may want to try to make a table (see photo - to be attached soon)

Also wife taller and heavier than husband means the same as husband shorter and lighter than wife.

Let's assume a husband is either heavier than or lighter than. It is possible that they have the same weight (mass) but let's not deal with that.

Can you continue?
(Note: Made has since replied that he was able to continue and solved the problem. See Comments for another suggested solution.)

Anyone would like to offer other solutions?