In this lesson, students are encouraged to discover all of the combinations for a given situation. Students apply problem-solving skills (including elimination and collection of organized data) to draw their conclusions. The use of higher-level thinking skills (synthesis, analysis, and evaluations) is the overall goal.
Distribute the Clowns activity sheet to each student. Students will be using the activity sheet to determine possible combinations by coloring. Each student needs a red, green, yellow, and blue crayon.
Review the problem by reading it to the students.
Each clown needs a mouth. Draw either a smile or forwn for each one. Each clown needs a colored hat: red, green, yellow, or blue. How many different clowns can we create? (No two should be the same.)
Guide students to predict how many different clowns can be created. Students should record their predictions on the activity sheet.
Next, allow enough time for students to color and to count the total number of combinations.
Students should count a total of eight different clowns. The combinations are:
Smile, Red hat Frown, Red hat Smile, Green hat Frown, Green hat Smile, Yellow hat Frown, Yellow hat Smile, Blue hat Frown, Blue hat
Students should compare their predictions to the actual total number of combinations. Ask students who predicted the correct number of combinations to share with the class how they chose their predictions.
In addition to the organized list, as shown previously, students may make a table to solve this problem.
For example:
Red Hat
Green Hat
Yellow Hat
Blue Hat
Smile
Red Hat, Smile
Green Hat, Smile
Yellow Hat, Smile
Blue Hat, Smile
Frown
Red Hat, Frown
Green Hat, Frown
Yellow Hat, Frown
Blue Hat, Frown
Extensions
1. What if six colors could be used for the hats? (Add orange and brown.)
[There would be twelve clowns colored.]
-Kindergarten, Algebraic Thinking
-Kindergarten, Number & Operations
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