Rita Perry is a graduate student in Educational Technology at San
Diego State University. Her background is in computer science and
Instructional Objective The learners will be able to match
artwork created during the Renaissance period with the artist and the
period in which it was created: Proto-Renaissance, Early Renaissance
or High Renaissance. In this domain the students will learn to
distinquish the styles of the individual artists and the
characteristics of the different Renaissance periods through a more
social, entertaining method than the traditional method of slide
memorization and reviews.
Learners/Context The learners are students in the second
semester of The Survey of Western Art, a college level or A.P. High
School course. Because this is a requirement for a B.A. in art, most
students are art majors. Most students are freshman or sophmores, but
a small number will be "mature" adults returning to study art history
for enrichment. The typical student will have a non-technical B.A.
degree or will be pursing one.
The game is designed to be played after the class has completed
studying the High Renaissance period. It can be played in class and
during student breaks and group study sessions.
Rationale The card game is an appropriate format because it
encourages collaboration among these students who tend to thrive in a
creative, social environment, especially the freshmen, who may be
lacking the discipline and motivation to memorize the information on
their own. The game can be easily transported and can be played among
friends socializing over coffee.
Rules Two to four people may play at the same time.
The game, similar to "Gin Rummy", is played in the following
- The object of the game is to form three sets from a dealt hand
of nine cards. The following combinations constitute a set.
- one artwork card/one artist name card/one Renaissance period
card (all from the same period)
- three artist name cards representing artists from the same
- three artwork cards representing artwork from the same
Note: three Renaissance period cards do not represent a
The dealer deals nine cards to each player. The remaining cards
are placed face down and the top card is turned over to begin the
discard stack. Moving clockwise from the dealer, the first player
chooses either the discarded card or a card from the face down
pile. The player determines which cards to keep and discards the
extra card. The first player to form three valid sets from ten
cards wins the game.
- The Use of "Mona Lisa" Cards. The deck contains three
Mona Lisa cards which are wild cards. A player may substitue them
for any card.
Card Design A card will be one of three types:
1) an artwork card (includes the Mona Lisa wild cards)
2) an artist name card
3) a Renaissance period card
They are the same size as playing cards with a picture of
Michelangelo's Statue of David on the back.
Deck Design The deck has a total of 57 cards arranged as
Each of the three Renaissance periods contains six, three card sets
(artwork card, artist name card, Renaissance period card) for a total
of 54 cards. The additional three Mona Lisa wild cards bring the deck
total to 57.
Artwork Card, Artist name card, Renaissance period card
Mona Lisa Wild Card
Design Process As a returning "mature" student, I took my
first art history class for enrichment. Fortunately I was disciplined
to study but saw many students who were not. The class lectures can
be fascinating with an entertaining professor, but the slide
memorization/review exercises tend to be boring and dull, regardless.
I remember wondering if there wasn't a better method to learn this
My initial idea was a card game for the entire second semester of
Western Art History, covering the Proto-Renaissance to the
Post-Modern periods. After compiling a list of the artists and works
to include, I realized the deck would be too large and there would be
too much material to absorb. Instead, small, more manageable decks
focusing on a few art periods are a better way to organize this
De La Croix, H., & Tansey, R. (1986). Gardner's Art Through
the Ages. Orlando, Florida: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, Inc.
Last updated by Rita
Perry on September 25, 1996.
Return to the Card
Game Table of Contents.
Educational Technology 670, Fall 1996.