Instructional Objective: After playing this game, the learner will be able to quickly select the HTML tag necessary to create a given text effect.
Learners/Context: The learners are HTML writers who desire to further their ability to quickly determine the correct HTML tag to use for a given situation.
HTML Memory is intended for use when the learner has already been exposed to and is basically familiar with HTML tags. The game is not intended as an introductory lesson in HTML, but rather serves as practice for the learner to further develop the conceptual link between a desired outcome and the appropriate HTML tag to acheive that outcome.
Rationale: HTML is a very simplistic language, so it seems logical that the card game should be similarly straightforward. The game is intended to make what might be tedious rote memorization a bit more enjoyable without detracting from the purpose of the game -- getting the learners to remember what HTML tag corresponds to a particular function. Using a card game for this topic helps add a little bit of fun to an otherwise potentially boring task.
Rules: HTML Memory is designed for two players.
Deck Design: HTML Memory consists of 36 cards--18 description cards and 18 tag cards. Thirty-six seemed to be a good number because it lends itself to a 6x6 array, which is farily managable for most tabletops -- approximately two and a half feet by three feet for standard-size playing cards. Eighteen pairs seems sufficient to cover a number of HTML tags, since it is possible to omit the redundant closing (slash) tags.
Design Process: The most difficult part of the design process was settling for a simple design. I initially envisioned a game similar to one called Flinch; however, the rules are incredibly complicated. It made little sense to develop a complicated game for a fairly straightforward subject.
My next consideration was a poker-style game, in which HTML tags would be used to form complete HTML hands -- the more complete the hand, the higher the score. I rejected this idea since (1) the odds of getting a viable HTML hand seemed low, (2) counting like cards, as in poker, defeats the purpose of the game, and (3) the overall purpose of the game was to reinforce the concept of each tag.
Since HTML tags don't necessarily have a specific order or value, and I didn't want to assign one artificially, a memory-style game seemed most suitable. The war class of card games most closely fit my designs, since (per the Card Game Design handout) it serves to focus on simple relationships between two cards.
The card design was accomplished in a very short time. I didn't want the deck to be ugly, but the aesthetics of the deck didn't seem that crucial. Additionally, I wanted to avoid having too much decoration on each card, since the most critical part of each card is the text or tag.
Last updated by Dallas Jones on September 28, 1995.
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Educational Technology 670, Fall 1995.