Play Plan : Odd One Out


Numeracy concept: Deductive reasoning skills, problem solving skills
Materials: 3 sets with 4 items in each set. Any 3 of the following options can be selected or the sets can be made using regular items (beads/blocks/candies/pulses) which are easily available.
Set 1: 3 spoons, 1 fork
Set 2: 3 blocks with similar shape, 1 block with a different shape
Set 3: 3 potatoes, 1 tomato
Set 4: 3 steel cups and 1 plastic cup
Set 5: 3 coins of similar size and 1 bigger/smaller than the rest

Prerequisites: NA
Number of players: 2 or more


The objective of this game is to enhance the problem-solving skills by finding things that does not belong to the group. This game is played by giving a set consisting of 3 similar items and 1 item which is different from the rest. The difference could be in the form of shape, size and texture. The difficulty level can be increased in two ways – by increasing the number of similar items and by decreasing the number of properties which make these items different from each other. For example, three 1 rupee coins and one 2 rupee coin, all the coins in equal size


Session 1: Verbal – Words

  • Before starting the game, analyze if there is anything among the participants which can be considered as odd one out. For example, one boy among all the girls or everybody’s name begins with the same letter except one. Do this only if it is possible among the group.
  • Give a few hints if required for the participants to figure out what is different among them. For example, in a group of 3 girls and 1 boy, call out the names of each child aloud and ask them to think about which name sounds different and why? Allow participants to cite their own reasons.
  • Inform children that you are going to call out four names and they must try to find out what is different. Give them time to think and answer. Only if they are unable to give any answer, provide them with a hint.

Odd one out using random words

  1. Apple – banana – potato – pineapple
  2. March – August – Sunday – December
  3. Father – mother – brother – water
  4. Red – glass – blue – green
  5. tall – angry – happy – sad

Odd one out using body parts

  1. Ear – nose – mouth – leg
  2. Knee – arm – finger – hand
  3. Lip – mouth – tooth – feet

Odd one out using numbers

  1. 20 – 10 – 30 – 41
  2. 61 – 71 – 55 – 81
  3. 1 – 2 – 4 – 6

Note: This can be played by forming teams and points can be given for every correct answer told by the corresponding team.

Session 2: Using materials

  • Inform participants that now they would find which is different from the given set of materials
  • Provide set 1 first by keeping them together in front of the participant. Ask the participant to explore all the four items in front of them and identify what these are. Instruct them to name the items and then pick one item which is different among the rest. Encourage them to give reasons for their choice.
  • Repeat the same with other set of items.
  • To make this more challenging, ask the participants to make their own set with items available. Encourage them to think in terms of size, shape, texture, where it is used, edible, non-edible and other characteristics. Appreciate when they come up with their own logic of separating items and forming sets.

To play it like a game, teams can be formed and one team can think of their own set of things tell the names of the 4 items to the other team. The other team would guess the odd one out. Appreciate their effort by clapping.