Please Note: These are not official Odyssey of the Mind Spontaneous problems but are supplied here as training tools for improving teams' spontaneous skills. Official practice problems can be found if you purchase the books of spontaneous problems and sample problems can also be found on the Odyssey of Mind website.
Current Verbal/Hands-on challenge:
Your challenge is to tell a story while incorporating items into the story.
This is a two-part problem. In Part I, you will have 3 minutes to discuss the problem, create a solution, and practice.
In Part II, you will have 3 minutes to solve the problem.
You are allowed to ask the judges questions; however, time will continue. You cannot talk to one another in Part II.
Your challenge is to tell a story that incorporates these items (point to items).
You are allowed to use the items as you wish, but nothing else may be used. You are not allowed to damage items marked with a yellow label. (Point to label).
You are allowed to practice as you wish in Part I. In Part II, you will give responses in any order. The first person will give a response that begins the story. The next personwill give a response that adds to the story, and so on.
The first team member will put a token in the container, select an item and give a response that starts the story. The next team member will put a token in the container, select a different item, give a response that adds to the story, and so on. For example, you could hold up this piece of wood (hold up wood) and say, “I found a hidden shelf in my closet.” The next team member could pick up the shoe and say, “It’s where I hide my shoes.”
Your team is not allowed to use the same item two times in a row and you are not allowed to damage any of the items.
Before making a response you will place a response token in the container. Each team member may make as many or as few responses as they wish.
You will be finished when response time ends or when you have used all of your response tokens.
Place the following items on a table:
4 oz. small, uncooked pasta, ex. Macaroni in a plastic cup
2 plastic cups
1 paper plate
4 sheets 8 ó” x 11” paper
1 piece of aluminum foil, 12”
1 string of yarn, 36”
*3 unsharpened pencils
*1 small saucepan
*2 wooden blocks
*1 soup ladle
*Mark these items with a yellow label.
Place 35 response tokens and a container within reach of the team.
You will receive:
1 point for each common response without using an item
3 points for each common response while using an item —OR— a creative response without using an item.
5 points for each creative response while using an item.
Responses will be judged on creativity and how well they add to the story.
You will receive 1 to 15 points for the overall creativity of your story.
When scoring overall creativity of the story, consider originality, variety of responses, how items are incorporated, improvisation, etc.
Examples of Common Responses:
Statements that do not make sense.
Statements that are not associated to the previous one.
Statements that are plausible but do not add to the story.
Statements similar to previous ones.
General statements (for example, “Oh, well”).
Statements that add to the story but are predictable.
Examples of Creative Responses:
Original, unexpected or humorous statements that continue the story.
Incorporating the items in an interesting way e.g. creating sound effects, or incorporating actions that match the story.
Statements that continue the story and allow an opportunity to change the story completely.
Statements that rhyme and continue the story.
Unusual or humorous comments about a previous response.
Puns or clever use of words that add to the story.
Have the team video themselves.
Did the team use the items creatively or follow along with their usual associations?
Did the team manage time well?