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Reddit asked teachers what the stupidest questions they’d ever been asked and HOLY MOLY kids are stupid

Kids say the darndest things, and also, the stupidest things.

Many people say that children are the wisest people alive – their curious and open minds mean they’re immune to the biases and lack of imagination that adults suffer from.

That may be true, but it is also true that kids are, by and large, idiots.

I know this because I was a kid – for instance, for most of my childhood I thought that Mount Everest was in the Arctic because it was the highest point of the world and on maps and…the Arctic was on the top.

Very dumb, I know.

So recently Reddit asked teachers what were the stupidest questions they’d ever been asked, and the answers did not disappoint.

The American education system is failing

Not a teacher, but in my senior year of high school I was in a personal finance class. The teacher explained that not paying your taxes could get you incarcerated. Student: “So if you don’t pay your taxes, the government will light you on fire?!” Teacher: “No, incarcerated means to imprison. You’re thinking of incinerated.” Student: “Oh. Wait, then what’s taxidermy?” – /r/purdue_pete33

Cultural confusion

We were looking at the Japanese flag and a kid asked, “Is that why they wear that dot on their forehead?” – /r/butteredjawbreakers

Partial credit

Grade 5 Sex Ed. I had a rule that any question can be asked but I might ask you to ask your parents instead of me.
“I heard a story about a man who put his ‘stuff’ into muffins and fed it to grade 1 kids.”
“Well… that is pretty disgusting and I would think that person would go to jail for doing that”
“Wouldn’t the girls get pregnant from eating it?”
And before I could say anything another student blurted out “NO!! They wouldn’t get pregnant!! They haven’t gone through puberty yet!!” – /r/ddubs08

The biggest town in the world!

“Not a teacher but a classmate of mine asked if Asia was a town in China, and, assuming that she was right, said that it was crazy that so many people from our school came from one town.” – /r/taitosmate

This is just one of those questions that no one could ever know the answer to

“How old was the average 18 year old in 1942?” – /r/republiccommando1138

Criminally stupid

“Me: This is a map of the United States. Here is the midwest–it’s where your math teacher is from. Student: Oh snap. We’re in a war with them. Me: Are you thinking about the middle east? Student: Oh yeah, is that a different place?
Me: (Playing a trivia game with students) Johannes Gutenberg invented what? Student: (Shoots his hand up in the air quickly before I even finished the question and very sure of his answer) Cheese!
Student: (Reading the three little pigs out loud)And the big bad wolf huffed and he puffed…and he passed it around Me: I’ve never heard of that version of the story before Mr. Student Student: You wouldn’t, Mr. Ellipsis_, it’s the hood version” – /r/elipsis_

This is my favourite one

Had a student ask me “What are those pyramid-shaped things in Egypt called?” – /r/mamisinhere

Adults can be very stupid, also

“I’m a corporate trainer, so hopefully this counts.
I used to train content for an exam that everyone in our field must take to get licensed. If you didn’t pass, you had to go back through the course. Well, I had a dude go through my class 4 times. FOUR.
Here’s the conversation we had before his 3rd exam:
Guy: “What attempt am I on?”
Me: “Wait.. what?”
Guy: “Well, I’ve taken the test twice, but everyone else in here hasn’t taken it, so am I taking my test for the first time or the third time?”
Me: “What do you think?”
Guy: “I don’t know. That’s why I’m asking you.”
Dude thought that he might be on his first attempt because he was back in a class with a bunch of people who were on theirs.” – /r/jbuch

A miracle!

I was a maths teacher. One day a student apropos of nothing right at the start of the class looked me dead in the eyes and asked me.
“How did Jesus nail his other hand to the cross?” He then began miming the impossible task, musing over whether he had a hammer on a rope in his mouth and swung his head side to side to insert the final nail.
“He didn’t” I replied
“Oh.” Said the student with a long pause. “That makes sense.” – /r/Shotaro

Wait, did a future doctor ask that…?

“If the patient has a brain haemorrhage, can we do a tourniquet on the neck to stop it?” – /r/FeelingofKnowing

To be honest, if we could breathe helium, that would be dope AF

I used to volunteer teaching at an after school program for 14-year olds. We were doing a project that involved balloons. One boy had blown his balloon but couldn’t get it tied. I tied it and gave it back to him. He immediately tossed it up. As it sank to the floor, his face fell. Obviously disappointed, he asked: “Aw, so they’re not helium?” /r/RachelMaryl

About the author

Technically, Riordan writes culture, politics and sport, but 80% of his words are direct quotes stolen from The Simpsons. He promises to tweet more at @riordanl and speaks words for The Zero Thumbs Down Podcast.

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