First-Grader Answers Teacher's Lighthearted Riddle In Super Philosophical Way

"Existentialism grade 101."

Things got surprisingly philosophical when a teacher in California posed a riddle for his first-grade students.

Bret Turner said an “awed, somber, reflective hush fell over his class” at Head-Royce School in Oakland after one child responded to his “Puzzle of the Week,” below, with the answer “death.”

“I didn’t want to tell them that actually the answer is the letter e, which just seemed so banal in the moment,” Turner wrote on Twitter on Tuesday. His post since has gone viral.

In a later tweet, Turner, the father of two, said the unidentified youngster’s classmates “continued along a similarly existential vein” by suggesting “all stuff,” “the end” and “nothingthing” as follow-up guesses.

Turner didn’t immediately answer HuffPost’s request for details.

His posts did, however, prompt a flurry of debate on Twitter: