Math Concepts

Pick the Odd One Out

27th Aug '201k views6 mins read

Table of Contents

1. Introduction
2. What is 'Odd one out'?
3. Examples
4. Summary

27 August 2020

Reading time: 4 minutes


A puzzle (generally images) for the students to find out, with four answer options and in that any three of the options would be similar and the remaining option would be different. Those answer options would vary on the basis of color, shape, size, quantity, category (vegetables, fruits, various types of things, vehicles, animals, and it goes on...)

Also read:

What is 'Odd one out'?

The 'Odd-one-out' is a concept that activates children’s thinking ability around a certain area or subject that is given in a bit of a confusing manner with similar objects or texts.

To correctly identify the odd one out, children need to develop their logical thinking in classifying those objects (or set of options) based on known concepts. Children need to differentiate the objects and circle the odd one from each set.

In odd one out problems, all the items given in the question except one follow a certain pattern or a group. The item which is different and doesn't belong to that group will be the answer. 

In other words, to find out the odd one in a set of options, children have to compare each option with other options and explain their understanding. In kindergarten Maths subject, these are the basic activities that kids need to practice to have basic ideas on odd man out.

Thus framing it in a sentence, the aim of ‘Odd one out’ is to bring out mathematical knowledge, vocabulary and thinking skills.

To begin with, let's start with a basic example -

odd one

Odd One Out activities also help the kids to develop their observation skills and their ability to discuss a topic.

It helps assess deductive reasoning thus improving children's logical deduction problem-solving ability, which means, the ability to remove similar items in a set and sorting the unique item.

To work out your own examples, take 3 pictures or 3 real objects that are similar and a 4th picture/real object which does not match with the previously taken pictures/real objects.

Generally, for kids, there are no incorrect answers, meaning that every child can explain and justify their answers. First, the children should be encouraged to find anything that the pictures have in common. Later they should be told to think to find as many differences as possible. Finally, each child should conclude the odd one out and explain their reason behind their solution.

For example, find the odd one out in following things

odd one                             

Carrot is the ‘odd one out’ as it belongs to the vegetable family. All other options belong to the fruit family.

Let’s see some practical examples to understand better. 


Take an example of a classroom of 20 students both boys and girls. One of the students, Vedanth, celebrates his birthday on Aug 7th and so he is not wearing his uniform. Hence he is an ‘Odd One Out’ in that classroom.

birthday odd one out                                           

Likewise, any birthday boy or birthday girl becomes an ‘odd one out’ on their birthday. If more than one student celebrates birthday then they all become odd ones out.

Ring Finger:

Assume a girl is wearing a ring on her ring finger in her right hand. That finger is an ‘odd one out’ among her five right-hand fingers.

    ring finger                                       


Example: Circle the odd one out in the group 

odd one

1st row - Juice is the odd one out as it is a liquid drink. Other items are snacks and solid ones.

2nd row - Carrot is the odd one out as it belongs to the vegetable family. Other items belong to the fruit family.

3rd row - Umbrella is the odd one out. All other items are hats which are worn on the head. Umbrella is not worn but is held in the hand during extremely sunny or rainy days.

4th row - Helmet is the odd one out. Remaining 3 options are vehicles that are used to drive. Helmets are worn  over the head for safety while driving.

5th row - Crab is the odd one out. The other 3 options belong to the fish family.

Example: Pick the odd ones out on the basis of shape, nature, color, size, difference, quantity etc

tv book telephone phone


(B) Book

Answer: Book is the ‘odd one out’ as it is made up of paper. The other 3 options are electronic means of communication.

Example: Choose the odd number.

(A) 4         (B) 6         (C) 9         (D) 10

(C) 9

Answer: 9 is the ‘odd one out’ as it is an odd number as 4, 6 and 10 are even numbers.

Example: Choose the odd option.

(A) 9 – 4         (B) 6 – 1        (C) 8 – 3          (D) 7 – 1

(D) 7-1

Answer: 7-1 is the ‘odd one out’ as the result of subtraction fact 7 - 1 is 6. All the other 3 subtraction facts give a result as number 5.

Example: Choose the odd option.


(A) S

Answer: ‘S’ is the ‘odd one out’ as it is written using a curved line and the other three letters are written using straight lines.

Example: Circle the odd one out in the group 

gloves flip-flops socks shoes

(A) Gloves

Answer: Gloves set is the ‘odd one out’ as it is worn on hands. Remaining 3 items are worn in legs.

Example: Choose the odd option.

spoon bowl fork hammer

(D) Hammer

Answer: Hammer is the ‘odd one out’ as it is a tool which is used for mending. Other options are cutlery items used in the kitchen.

Example: Circle the odd one out in the following 

triangle square pentagon hexagon

(C) Pentagon

Answer: Option C is the ‘odd one out’. In the other 3 images, the number of sides of the image is equal to the number of equal parts drawn inside the circle of the same image. Only in option C, the bigger image [Pentagon] has 5 sides but the circle inside the Pentagon has 4 equal parts.


To describe in simple words, something or someone in a group that is different, that does not match with others in a certain logical manner is the odd one out. Practice these questions a lot more, to excel in aptitude exams, competitive exams, etc., to come out with flying colors.

Check out the interesting Odd one out games here and learn through fun. 

Thanks for spending your time here and in case of any queries or suggestions please do comment below.

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