Name: Heather

Who is asking: Student
Level: Secondary

One goes to a source of water with two jugs and only two jugs. One jug had a capacity of exactly three pints and the other five pints. Both jugs are opaque (you canít see inside them) and irregularly shaped. How can you use the two jugs and only the two jugs to measure exactly four pints of water?

Hi Heather,

If you are going to have four pints it must be in the large jug since the small jug won't hold four pints. If you could somehow get one pint you could pour it into the large jug, fill the small jug and add it to the large jug to get the required four pints. Thus the problem would be solved if you could get one pint in either jug.

The jugs hold three and five pints. I can get one from three and five by

3 + 3 - 5 = 1

Does this help? Let me know.

Go to Math Central