Aye-Aye

I really wanted to get off my chest the disaster that was Mr Physics and my attempts at purchasing a fridge-freezer during the holidays; when I am able to wait in for the delivery van, and spend the time defrosting the old one. So far we’ve had two unsuccessful deliveries and still haven’t got a new one, although the credit card balance insists I have. But alas, no one is likely to be interested. So I will vent my outrage at another annoyance, and one that I am happy to say I am not alone in. This one annoys Mr Mackenzie and Mr McPhee who are on the AH SQA Physics examining team with me.

i, ii, iii, iv, v, vi, vii, viii, ix, x

How can this possible annoy, you ask?

Now as a teacher I often use this list in questions, although rarely get beyond vi. How can anyone think this is anything other than a counting system?

Well most young people think that Roman numerals can only have a capital, and so the list above is

aye, aye-aye, aye-aye-aye, ivy, vee, vee-aye etc.

I don’t know where students get this “Roman numerals can only be capitals” thing from? Surely it is obvious by the sequence. I mean, even this is too easy for a Mensa test

Finish the sequence…….

i,   ii,   iii,  ……

If this was just a random set of numbers your immediate answer should be

iiii…..

but it is

iv…. or one before five!

IT’S ROMAN NUMERALS!!! Someone should really be teaching you this at Primary School and if your teachers are calling them ayes and aye-ayes show them the pictures below.

These are aye-ayes, the largest nocturnal primate in the world. Whereas, Roman numerals are for counting…. see below

Better go and choose a new fridge freezer! Think I’ll make anyone who can’t count in Roman numerals copy out the table after class!

Looks like I haven’t done enough boating this holiday, pupils beware!

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