Odd One Out is one of my favourite ESL warm-up activities. If you’re looking to get your classes started off on the right foot, then keep on reading to find out more about it.
The best part is that this vocabulary warm up exercise requires no materials and you can make it up in a minute or two before class starts. Every English teacher should have at least a few of these activities in their back pocket. Keep on reading for all the details you need to know about Odd 1 Out, one of the best games to play in class.
Odd One Out Game: An Introduction
Skills: Reading/speaking or writing
Materials Required: Groups of words
Level: Beginner to Low Beginner
Time: 5 Minutes
If you’re looking for an ESL warmer to review vocabulary, then consider Odd 1 Out. It’s easy to set up, the students like it and it works equally well for children as well as adults. You can even use a simple version of this for an ESL Kindergarten game.
Learn More about Odd One Out
Odd One Out is an ESL warm-up game that can be used to review vocabulary from the previous classes. You can write up a few sets of vocabulary words on the board or put them up on the PowerPoint.
I use 4 in each group, with one of them being the odd one out. Some examples:
orange, yellow, apple, banana Yellow is the odd one out because it’s not a fruit
table, book, chair, desk Book because it’s not a piece of furniture
fish, cat, dog, zebra Zebra isn’t a pet. Or, a fish doesn’t have legs
Then, the students have to choose which one doesn’t fit, and then explain why it doesn’t. You can do this just for fun, or make an element of competition to it. If a competition, you can have students write down the odd word, and then the explanation. When done, they put up their hands and you can check.
Procedure for Odd One Out Games:
1. Before class begins, make 4-6 groups of 4 words, with one of them being unlike the others. You may want to come up with some groups of words that have more than one possible answer.
2. Put students in pairs and they have to choose the odd word from each group and also write (or say) why they chose it. Example: Yellow-not a fruit. I don’t require full sentences for the explanation but just a word or two.
3. Have students raise their hands when they complete all the sets and the teacher can check their answers. If correct, that group is the winner. If not, they are out of the running.
4. I usually make a rule that I’ll only check each group once in order to prevent random guessing.
Odd 1 Out ESL Worksheets
Do you want to give your students some additional practise with this kind of ESL activity? There are a number of worksheets that you might want to consider. Why reinvent the wheel if other teachers have gone before you and done the hard work, right? Here are some of the best Odd 1 Out worksheets to consider:
There are some fun online games for choosing the one that doesn’t match. Here are some of the best options:
Did You Like this Odd 1 Out Game?
- Amazon Kindle Edition
- Bolen, Jackie (Author)
- English (Publication Language)
- 51 Pages - 07/29/2015 (Publication Date)
Do you like this ESL warm-up game? Then you’re going to LOVE this book: 39 ESL Warm-Ups for Teenagers and Adults.
It’ll help you get your classes started off on the right foot, guaranteed. It really does make a difference to your students whether you start with a warm-up, of if you just jump into the heart of the lesson. Keep in mind that some of your students may have spoken a single word of English since your last class! Ease them into things with a quick warm-up.
Most of the ESL Warm-Ups in this book can be used to review material from previous classes, similar to how this activity can be used to review old vocabulary words. It’s an ideal way to keep things fresh and interesting in your classes for teenagers or adults.
39 ESL Warm-Ups is available in both print and digital formats. The (cheaper!) digital copy can be read on any device if you download the free Kindle reading app. It’s easier than ever to have almost 40 top-quality warmers at your fingertips wherever you might be planning your lessons.
You can check out the book for yourself over on Amazon. Click the link below to learn more about it and also to check for the best prices on ESL activity books like this one:
Check out Another ESL Warm-Up
Another one of my favourite ESL warm-up activities is Just a Minute. You can learn more about it in this short video below:
Have your say about this Odd 1 Out ESL Activity?
Do you have a favourite warm-up game or activity that you like to use with your students? Or, how do you review vocabulary with your students? Leave a comment below and share your thoughts with us. We’d love to hear from you.
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Last update on 2020-10-27 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API