If you take away 3 from 5 your left with 2.
You can make 5 triangles out of 9 toothpicks. With 6 toothpicks, make a large triangle with 2 toothpicks for each side. Now, take individual toothpicks, and make a smaller triangle inside the larger one by joining the midpoints of the sides of the previous triangle. (The vertices of the smaller triangle are the midpoints of the sides of the larger one).
When you take away the whole and still have some left over it is because you divided the word "wholesome" in two.
Note that the question does not say how the 5 squares are arranged. Let me specify one scenario: ____ |_|_| |_|_| |_| Take the two toothpicks from the upper left corner (the upper-right and the corner right below it will do too) and put them inside one of the remaining squares like a cross +. I can count 7 squares or 8 squares, depending on whether I count the square that contains the + or not. If your question can be more specific about the count of toothpicks, perhaps we can have a better solution. ======================
You arrange 12 toothpicks into a large square, subdivided into four squares : 2 toothpicks on each side and four more, one each from the middle of the sides to the center of the large square. Now you have four (small) squares. Take away 2 adjacent toothpicks from the ones in the center, and you have 2 squares : one remaining small one and the large one that has the small one inside it. (see related link)
Take away one side
Arrange the 9 toothpicks thus: 7 + 3
Firstly, take out three toothpicks that form a triangle. You will be left with two triangles. Secondly, place all three toothpicks to form a triangle above the centre of the two triangles. Four small triangles and a large triangle will be formed, which makes them five triangles. Example: At first: /_\/_\/_\ Imagine that these are three triangles (nine toothpicks), with the sides joined. Secondly: /_\/_\ Imagine that you have taken away one triangle (three toothpicks). Thirdly: Place the three toothpicks to form a triangle above the two triangles. Imagine that the sides are joined. Four small triangles are formed. The four triangles make up a large triangle, which makes them five. /_\ /_\/_\
Not a clue. The correct answer is to take away a square. Since it requires 4 lines to make a square in the first place. Bam, just take away one of the squares. Pretty simple.
3+1+1=5 5 toothpicks
Take two toothpicks that create an outside corner. Cross them like a + inside one of the remaining boxes. Count the new four smaller boxes inside it as 4, the one they are formed in as 5, and the two untouched boxes as 6 and 7. (The trick is to remember to count the larger box the 4 are formed in.)