Art History Games in the Classroom


I love teaching my students the context of the artist and their work. If your a ‘good art teacher’ you introduce your students to or have an artist associated with the project you are currently working on. How about going a step further?

I am fortunate enough to have block scheduling, which means I have 65 minutes each instructional period. This may sound like a lot of time, but I promise you it goes by very quickly. The studio portion of the class is during the first half to three quarters. After clean up, and we are beginning to wind down as we dig into Art History, or Art related occupations. The game that I use quite a bit is the Memory Game. Just how you remember it, but with an Art History twist. Depending on the artist, I will choose 10 images of their work and print it twice. On the other side I label the Memory according to the artist or genre. Typically, I use this game on my dry erase board (taped on) and I number them 1-20 (in a random order) with an expo marker.

If you click on the photo’s caption, you will get more information about the artist and artwork.

Here are examples of the Frank Lloyd Wright Memory:

FLW Memory Game



FLW’s commissioned Beth Sholom Temple, PA

I use these also for critique discussions, for ticket-out-the-door questions and even during their Art Finals.-which really are not finals, they are more a kin to Win, Lose, or Draw.

Here is another example, where I instead focused more on a genre, not artist: (two of these artists I’ve met and are fabulous women, thank you Marywood University)

Environmental Artists Memory Game, including 10 artists and one of their instillations.




Students can play this game by table or individually. They are essentially flash cards, so why not let students ‘test’ themselves if they finish a project early? Even though the idea is extremely simply, there are countless ways of using them. I am still finding new ways of integrating them after three years of teaching.

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~ by florriebarnett on August 25, 2012.

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