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Ice Cream Scoop

This is a really nice task as it is open to everyone, can be solved in different ways and can also extend to work in combinatorics – a nice way of organizing counting. Ask students to work on this task in groups, and to display their results on posters. Often we name students’ different approaches and strategies.

Task Instructions

In shops with lots of ice-cream flavors there are many different flavor combinations, even with only a 2-scoop cone.  With 1 ice-cream flavor there is 1 kind of 2-scoop ice cream, but with 2 flavors there are 3 possible combinations (eg vanilla/vanilla, chocolate/chocolate, and vanilla/chocolate).

  • How many kinds of 2-scoop cones are there with 10 flavors?
  • What about “n” flavors?
  • Create a poster that represents your group’s thinking.


Pencils and Paper