Clubs and Activities » Odyssey of the Mind

Odyssey of the Mind

logo for the Odyssey of the Mind Program

Odyssey of the Mind is a creative problem-solving competition for students in grades K-8. Teams of students select a problem and create a solution in a competition against other teams in the same problem or division.

The Odyssey of the Mind teaches students how to think divergently by providing open-ended problems that appeal to a wide range of interests. Students learn how to identify challenges and to think creatively to solve those problems. They are free to express their ideas and suggestions without fear of criticism. The creative problem-solving process rewards thinking “outside of the box.” While conventional thinking has an important place in a well-rounded education, students need to learn how to think creatively and productively.

In the Odyssey of the Mind, students work in teams of up to seven members under the guidance of an adult coach for three to five months.

Students work to:
  • Solve a long-term problem – resulting in an 8 minutes collaborative and creative presentation;
  • Prepare and compete in a spontaneous problem – a 2-5 minute ‘on your feet’ problem-solving;
  • Demonstrate exceptional creative through their style - a scored element;
  • Work within defined rules for the problem and cost limitations.
To solve a problem, teams must follow the general rules found in the comprehensive guide, limitations in the problem, and clarifications issued during the year.
Teams are scored for meeting the requirements of the problem and for creativity in categories specific to each problem.