A teenager in Shenyang, Northeast China’s Liaoning province, reported a mistake in a textbook to its publisher, pointing out a mix-up of two insects in one of its illustrations. His correction won praises from netizens on Chinese social media.
“I noticed a tiny mistake on page 95 of the English textbook published by Shanghai Educational Publishing House when I was preparing for lessons before class,” said Cui Chenxi, a 7th grader in Shenyang No. 126 Middle School. Cui had found an illustration captioned as “bee” to actually be hoverfly in the picture.
An editor of the publisher on Friday confirmed the error they made after consulting a biology teacher and said it will rectify the mistake by replacing the wrong picture in a reprinted version after it gets approval from the Ministry of Education.
The editor also thanked the 12-year-old boy for reporting the error, and praised him for being “really professional”.
When asked how he discovered the mistake Cui said, “It’s simple. Bees have two pairs of wings while hoverflies have only one pair of functional wings and bees are plump with their round belly versus the hoverfly’s slim figure. What’s more, bees have distinct tentacles while those of hoverflies are obscure.”
As a young man who took an avid interest in biology, Cui had raised 10 types of ants in his primary school days in order to observe the insects’ habits and their division of labor, according to Cui’s mother.
The family stores more than 300 titles of books related to natural science and Cui has a bookshelf of his own. Having not attended a single one of the extracurricular training classes which parents are keen to put their kids in, the boy is happy to learn independently.
Many net users expressed their appreciation of Cui’s devotion to science and commented that it’s only with passion that one can reach higher achievement.