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Look at the shapes below and see if you can figure out which one doesn’t belong?  That is, which one doesn’t follow a rule that the others follow?

Many puzzles have just one answer, but this one has more than one.  In fact, any of the four shapes is a “correct” answer. It requires flexible thinking (cognitive flexibility) to come up with an explanation for each of the alternatives that explains why it is different in some way from the others.

Top left:  This triangle is big; the others are small.

Top right:  This triangle has unequal sides; the others are have equal sides (or nearly so).

Bottom right:  This triangle is standing on one of its points; the others stand on a side (base).

Bottom right:  This triangle is blue; the others are red.

 

Cognitive flexibility is one of three core Executive Functions, a special group of cognitive skills and help us manage how we focus, think and act.  Cognitive flexibility helps us see things from different points of view, take a new approach when our first approach to solving a problem doesn’t work, and adapt our behavior to changes in the environment.

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