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Sprite Christmas Tree

How many cans of soda were used to make this Christmas tree?


Our neighborhood Albertson’s grocery store has this soda can display sitting right outside their front entrance. It is built from 12-packs of SPRITE, topped with one 12-pack of FANTA. I’ve been walking past the display for a few weeks now. Yesterday, the conditions were such that I could finally snap a picture. No other shoppers out front. My Assistant Superintendent of Educational Services was not doing her weekly shopping. Most importantly, neither of my kids were with me, so they were spared the public embarrassment of their mom taking pictures of store displays.

Guess how many cans of soda are in the SPRITE Christmas Tree.

Use the too high, too low, just right system of guessing from Estimation 180.

It may help them to know that the tree is only one 12-pack deep.


There isn’t a primary source available to verify the number of cans (12-packs) that the salesman used to create the display like there was for the Candy Cane Tree. (@modernhonolulu on Intagram)

So, here is how I figured it out:

1.  There are 13 rows. The first row has one 12-pack, the second row has two 12-packs, the third row has three 12-packs…. You get the idea. So, in the 13 rows of 12-packs there are seven sets of thirteen 12-packs or ninety-one 12 packs.

2.  Each of the ninety-one 12-packs has 12 cans, so multiply 12 x 91.

3.  There are 1092 cans in the SPRITE tree.

Candy Cane Christmas Tree

How many candy canes did the design team of Curate Decor + Design use to make this fabulous tree in the lobby of The Modern Honolulu?


First, make a guess that is too high. Then, make a guess that is too low. Finally, make your guess. Be sure to write down each guess. (This nice system of having kids work with number and estimating is courtesy of Andrew Stadel’s work found at Estimation 180.)

If you need a little more information before you give a final estimate, here is the very top part of the tree.


Record any revisions. How confident are you that your estimate is really, really, really close?

I am sure that by now you JUST can’t stand it and desperately need to know how many candy canes in the Christmas tree.

That was where I was at as soon as I saw the tree–just had to know how many candy canes were used. The folks at the front desk at The Modern Honolulu were super helpful and they just told me. They didn’t even make me guess.

Are you ready? Are you sure you don’t want to revise your guess one more time?

Drum roll please…

You are looking at 4510 candy canes.