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Broad Topics > Decision Mathematics and Combinatorics > Combinations

### Button-up Some More

##### Stage: 2 Challenge Level:

How many ways can you find to do up all four buttons on my coat? How about if I had five buttons? Six ...?

### Elevenses

##### Stage: 3 Challenge Level:

How many pairs of numbers can you find that add up to a multiple of 11? Do you notice anything interesting about your results?

### Domino Sorting

##### Stage: 1 Challenge Level:

Try grouping the dominoes in the ways described. Are there any left over each time? Can you explain why?

### Triangle Animals

##### Stage: 1 Challenge Level:

How many different ways can you find to join three equilateral triangles together? Can you convince us that you have found them all?

### Cuisenaire Environment

##### Stage: 1 and 2 Challenge Level:

An environment which simulates working with Cuisenaire rods.

### Three Ball Line Up

##### Stage: 1 Challenge Level:

Use the interactivity to help get a feel for this problem and to find out all the possible ways the balls could land.

### The Twelve Pointed Star Game

##### Stage: 2 Challenge Level:

Have a go at this game which involves throwing two dice and adding their totals. Where should you place your counters to be more likely to win?

### Cuisenaire Counting

##### Stage: 1 Challenge Level:

Here are some rods that are different colours. How could I make a dark green rod using yellow and white rods?

### Finding Fifteen

##### Stage: 2 Challenge Level:

Tim had nine cards each with a different number from 1 to 9 on it. How could he have put them into three piles so that the total in each pile was 15?

### Robot Monsters

##### Stage: 1 Challenge Level:

Use these head, body and leg pieces to make Robot Monsters which are different heights.

### Break it Up!

##### Stage: 1 and 2 Challenge Level:

In how many different ways can you break up a stick of 7 interlocking cubes? Now try with a stick of 8 cubes and a stick of 6 cubes.

### What Shape and Colour?

##### Stage: 1 Challenge Level:

Can you fill in the empty boxes in the grid with the right shape and colour?

### Take Three from Five

##### Stage: 4 Challenge Level:

Caroline and James pick sets of five numbers. Charlie chooses three of them that add together to make a multiple of three. Can they stop him?

### Six Times Five

##### Stage: 3 Challenge Level:

How many six digit numbers are there which DO NOT contain a 5?

### Ladybirds in the Garden

##### Stage: 1 Challenge Level:

In Sam and Jill's garden there are two sorts of ladybirds with 7 spots or 4 spots. What numbers of total spots can you make?

### Sealed Solution

##### Stage: 2 Challenge Level:

Ten cards are put into five envelopes so that there are two cards in each envelope. The sum of the numbers inside it is written on each envelope. What numbers could be inside the envelopes?

### 1 Step 2 Step

##### Stage: 3 Challenge Level:

Liam's house has a staircase with 12 steps. He can go down the steps one at a time or two at time. In how many different ways can Liam go down the 12 steps?

### Prison Cells

##### Stage: 2 Challenge Level:

There are 78 prisoners in a square cell block of twelve cells. The clever prison warder arranged them so there were 25 along each wall of the prison block. How did he do it?

### Chances Are

##### Stage: 4 Challenge Level:

Which of these games would you play to give yourself the best possible chance of winning a prize?

### Teams

##### Stage: 5 Challenge Level:

Two brothers belong to a club with 10 members. Four are selected for a match. Find the probability that both brothers are selected.

### The Puzzling Sweet Shop

##### Stage: 2 Challenge Level:

There were chews for 2p, mini eggs for 3p, Chocko bars for 5p and lollypops for 7p in the sweet shop. What could each of the children buy with their money?

### Number Round Up

##### Stage: 1 Challenge Level:

Arrange the numbers 1 to 6 in each set of circles below. The sum of each side of the triangle should equal the number in its centre.

### Buying a Balloon

##### Stage: 2 Challenge Level:

Lolla bought a balloon at the circus. She gave the clown six coins to pay for it. What could Lolla have paid for the balloon?

### A City of Towers

##### Stage: 1 Challenge Level:

In this town, houses are built with one room for each person. There are some families of seven people living in the town. In how many different ways can they build their houses?

### Mixed-up Socks

##### Stage: 1 Challenge Level:

Start with three pairs of socks. Now mix them up so that no mismatched pair is the same as another mismatched pair. Is there more than one way to do it?

### Two Dice

##### Stage: 1 Challenge Level:

Find all the numbers that can be made by adding the dots on two dice.

### Five Coins

##### Stage: 2 Challenge Level:

Ben has five coins in his pocket. How much money might he have?

### Noah

##### Stage: 1 Challenge Level:

Noah saw 12 legs walk by into the Ark. How many creatures did he see?

### Let's Investigate Triangles

##### Stage: 1 Challenge Level:

Vincent and Tara are making triangles with the class construction set. They have a pile of strips of different lengths. How many different triangles can they make?

### Making Cuboids

##### Stage: 2 Challenge Level:

Let's say you can only use two different lengths - 2 units and 4 units. Using just these 2 lengths as the edges how many different cuboids can you make?

### Sweets in a Box

##### Stage: 2 Challenge Level:

How many different shaped boxes can you design for 36 sweets in one layer? Can you arrange the sweets so that no sweets of the same colour are next to each other in any direction?

### Plants

##### Stage: 1 and 2 Challenge Level:

Three children are going to buy some plants for their birthdays. They will plant them within circular paths. How could they do this?

### More Plant Spaces

##### Stage: 2 and 3 Challenge Level:

This challenging activity involves finding different ways to distribute fifteen items among four sets, when the sets must include three, four, five and six items.

### More Children and Plants

##### Stage: 2 and 3 Challenge Level:

This challenge extends the Plants investigation so now four or more children are involved.

### Those Tea Cups

##### Stage: 2 Challenge Level:

Place the 16 different combinations of cup/saucer in this 4 by 4 arrangement so that no row or column contains more than one cup or saucer of the same colour.

### The Olympic Torch Tour

##### Stage: 4 Challenge Level:

Imagine you had to plan the tour for the Olympic Torch. Is there an efficient way of choosing the shortest possible route?

### Button-up

##### Stage: 1 Challenge Level:

My coat has three buttons. How many ways can you find to do up all the buttons?

### More and More Buckets

##### Stage: 2 Challenge Level:

In this challenge, buckets come in five different sizes. If you choose some buckets, can you investigate the different ways in which they can be filled?

### Spectrometry Detective

##### Stage: 5 Challenge Level:

From the atomic masses recorded in a mass spectrometry analysis can you deduce the possible form of these compounds?

### Trominoes

##### Stage: 3 and 4 Challenge Level:

Can all but one square of an 8 by 8 Chessboard be covered by Trominoes?

### Coins

##### Stage: 3 Challenge Level:

A man has 5 coins in his pocket. Given the clues, can you work out what the coins are?

### Crossing the Bridge

##### Stage: 3 Challenge Level:

Four friends must cross a bridge. How can they all cross it in just 17 minutes?

### We'll Bang the Drum

##### Stage: 1 Challenge Level:

How many different rhythms can you make by putting two drums on the wheel?

### Play a Merry Tune

##### Stage: 2 Challenge Level:

Explore the different tunes you can make with these five gourds. What are the similarities and differences between the two tunes you are given?

### Sounds Great!

##### Stage: 1 Challenge Level:

Investigate the different sounds you can make by putting the owls and donkeys on the wheel.

### Move a Match

##### Stage: 2 Challenge Level:

How can you arrange these 10 matches in four piles so that when you move one match from three of the piles into the fourth, you end up with the same arrangement?

### Four-triangle Arrangements

##### Stage: 1 Challenge Level:

How many different shapes can you make by putting four right- angled isosceles triangles together?

### Combining Cuisenaire

##### Stage: 2 Challenge Level:

Can you find all the different ways of lining up these Cuisenaire rods?

### Colour Building

##### Stage: 3 Challenge Level:

Using only the red and white rods, how many different ways are there to make up the other colours of rod?

### Two and One

##### Stage: 1 Challenge Level:

Terry and Ali are playing a game with three balls. Is it fair that Terry wins when the middle ball is red?