Lemon

Strawberry

Vanilla

Peach

Chocolate

Mint

Undo
Click the buttons on the ice cream machine.

# Ice Cream Starter Of The Day

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Topics: Starter | Combinations | Probability

• Mrs Simpson and 2D1, Torry Academy, Aberdeen
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• We spent the whole lesson investigating triangular numbers and constructing formulae from this lesson starter. Our class enjoyed it very much!
• Katherine Morelli-Batters,
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• I would like to say I got 28 solutions and it says there are only 21!
• Mrs Wallace, Blenheim High School
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• I had no trouble finding just 21 solutions. Make sure you read the question carefully. A cone is not different if turning it around makes it the same as another cone. A good starter.
• Mr Heeley's Y 7 stars, NLC, Huddersfield
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• Reece adopted a systematic method from the start and helped everybody to get started. We thought this was a cushtie starter; it made us hungry for more!
In fact, we thought this was so nICE we sCREAMed with delight!!
Lots of love to you all at Transum xxxx
• Christine Pardo and 5P, ISH
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• I am slightly concerend at the number of (presumably trained) teachers writing in saying they got the wrong answer!! What hope do the pupils have??!! My class and I thought this was a great starter; it's fun and enourgaes children to read questions carefully and record their answers systematically. Excellent!
• Tegan Googum, class, 5S1, Victory Ocean State Skewl
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• We could only find fifteen different combinations!
This is a mind bending activity.
• Mr Taylor, Gartree High School, Leics, UK
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• My classes enjoyed this starter, although I didn't notice the solution diagram at the bottom of the page untill after I'd taught two classes. My lower ability groups liked being able to make the combinations on the cones, but it was a bit laborious for the groups that got the hang of it quickly.
Perhaps there could be a link at the top of each page that takes you straight to the answer, rather than having to scroll down the page manually, past all the comments.
• D. Bracher, Bacton Community Middle School
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• A very good starter. Ethan says "why wasn't your answer in the shape of a cone?".
• ACD, Rainham
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• My high & low ability classes really enjoyed this starter. Maybe the answer could include a 6*6 sample space diagram showing all the possible combinations. This could be used to show how 15 of the combinations were duplicates because the order was unimportant.
Excellent starter.
• David Bracher, Bacton Community Middle School
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• My class thought this was a great starter. I am a little concerned, however, that Miss Pardo sholuld comment on trained teachers' failure to get the right answer when she failed to spell 'concerned' and 'encourages' correctly! To quote her, "what chance have the children if their teachers cannot spell?" We all make mistakes, so don't be so superior!
• K.Ward, Wolverhampton
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• There are definately 21 combinations. If you work systematically. My class got into quite a heated debate but came up with 21 eventually.
• Chynah Saxton , Aged 11, Chilton Trinity Bridgwater Somerset England Europe
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• But cant you have 1 on its own like strawberry or chocolate on its own.
• J Heeley, Whp Federation
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• If you work systematically of course you will find the correct solution; it's quite concerning to think that so many are missing the crucial point that, for example, strawberry and chocolate is the same as chocolate and strawberry. I did laugh when I read the reviewer expressing concern over teachers' mathematical ability who herself then made a spelling error in her review LOL!! I will use this with my year 8 this week as we have just completed a functional skills piece from Boland titled Ice creams (so it fits nicely).
• Hanxiao, China
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• (1+6)*6/2=21
(1+7)*7/2=28
(x+1)*x/2
=(x^2+x)/2.
• Mrs A O'hagan, Holyrood Sec School Glasgow
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• Second year class enjoyed this starter.
• Magen, Motherwell
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• I got 27 because if you swap the two scoops around it is tecnically a different combonation!
• Sarah, Age 11, Channing School, Highgate
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• This was really fun but quite tricky!
• Alan Brooke-Feather, Wolverley CE High School
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• I tried this with my top set year 7 after studying probability and combined events. They realised straight away that the way to tackle this was by using the sample space diagram then looking for similar outcomes eg sv=vs. My middle set year 8 took the longer path of listing outcomes without a space diagram, but enjoyed the challenge.
• D Robinson, Minnesota
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• There are 6 minus 1 possible combinations for unique flavors.
Since they are used in combination, then it would be 6 divided by 2.
So far we have (6-1) * 6/2 = 5 * 3 = 15
Lastly, we need to include the possibility for each flavor being its own combination or 6.
Therefore, (6-1) * 6/2 + 6
5 * 3 + 6
15 + 6
21.
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• My class did this all maths lesson!
• D Spence, Tameside
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• My class and I couldn't do this. I'm concerned at the number of combinations of ice creams we failed to find. What hope do the children have if neither they nor I can solve such a mind bending task?
• Dr Duxbury, Edwinstree Middle School
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• A rather ambiguous question! Does 'different' mean you cannot have the same flavour twice (e.g. two strawberry scoops whch I like) or that you count strawberry on the bottom and chocolate on top the same as chocolate on the bottom and strawberry on top (most ice-cream sellers rarely put the ice-cream side by side!). Do you have to have two scoops or can you have just one scoop?
Many assumptions made here which makes for a very good discussion with your class where they can find a variety of answers! At the end of the day as long as students can justify and explain their answers, this is all that matters.
• 4KJ, Hong Kong
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• It is easy and fun!!
• Primary, North West
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• Nice resource. Lots of odd comments. Would much prefer mint to lime then we could one letter to record flavours e.g. SL (strawberry and lemon).

[Transum: Great idea. Lime has now been changed to Mint. Thanks very much for the suggestion.]
• Primary, North West
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• I will be using it tomorrow so thank you for the quick update!
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• Kaiser Soazay, Yorkshire
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• Thank you. Brilliant. Found 21 ways.
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How did you use this starter? Can you suggest how teachers could present or develop this resource? Do you have any comments? It is always useful to receive feedback and helps make this free resource even more useful for Maths teachers anywhere in the world.

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Not for me! I wouldn't use this type of activity.

This starter has scored a mean of 3.7 out of 5 based on 884 votes.

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What if there were 7 different flavours?

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 Teacher, do your students have access to computers?Do they have iPads or Laptops in Lessons? Whether your students each have a TabletPC, a Surface or a Mac, this activity lends itself to eLearning (Engaged Learning).

Transum.org/go/?Start=November12

Here is the URL which will take them to a related student activity.

Transum.org/go/?to=ice

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