The following problems are for practice only. To view the synopses of the official 2017 - 2018 Odyssey of the Mind problems, click here!

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Omer In The Basket


  1. JUDGE READS TO TEAMS: (Do not read material in parentheses.)
    1. You will have 1 minute to think and 2 minutes to respond. You may ask questions during your thinking time; however, time continues. No other talking is allowed.
    2. You will receive 1 point for each common response. Highly creative or humorous responses will receive 3 points. This will be a subjective opinion of the judges, and the judges' decision is final.
    3. Your team is to take turns in sequence. You may not skip your turn, or repeat, or pass. If one member of the team is stuck, the team is stuck. However, each of you has been given one stump card. You may skip your turn by placing your stump card in the box. You may each skip one turn. Your team will receive 4 points for each card not used.
    4. Once the time begins, it will not be stopped. If the judge asks you to repeat a response, or to clari- fy it, or to give a more appropriate response, it counts against your time. Speak loudly and clearly.
    5. Your problem is to say something about the basket. (Show the team a photocopy of the picture) For example, you could say, "OMER looks like he's sleeping." (Repeat number 5, "Your problem is.... ")

  2. FOR JUDGES ONLY:
    1. Be sure to give exactly 1 minute to think and 2 minutes to respond. Timing is critical. Students responding at the buzzer can finish and be scored.
    2. Score: 1 point for each common response, 3 points for each creative response.
    3. Give each team member one stump card. If a team member uses his or her card, make him or her place it in a box when it is used. Be sure to award 4 points for each unused card.
    4. Examples of Common Responses:

      General comments on appearance: That's a pretty basket; OMER looks tired; The flowers are pretty; OMER has his tongue out; The basket is white.

      Miscellaneous: Raccoons eat eggs; There's a basket in a basket; Is that OMER Junior? Who cuts that grass?

    5. Examples of Creative Responses:

      Humorous responses: You could make an "OM"-lette with those eggs; OMER must have eaten a lot because he looks stuffed; OMER is so cute... he's such a doll; hard-boiled eggs; Did a wood- en chicken lay those eggs?

      Unique responses: I'll bet artificial bees love those flowers; OMER is saying, "Na... na... na"; OMER doesn't have his pants on; If the wooden eggs hatched, would we get a wooden chicken (a tree, 2' x 4", etc.)? What kind of picnic could you have with the stuff in that basket? Why doesn't the little raccoon have tiny eggs in his basket?

      Miscellaneous: The Easter Raccoon must have been here; OMER has hands but no feet; Do rac- coons lay eggs? Do raccoon dolls eat wooden eggs?