Art History through Games

Most teens will tell you there's nothing more boring than history...except maybe ART history. So, I'm experimenting with a little subversive teaching in the form of games as a way to sweeten the deal and get students engaged in looking at art.

Kids always love BINGO, especially when the prize involves vitamin S in the form of Bubble gum. I've used BINGO as an informal post assessment to check their learning, (and my teaching!) but I'm also interested in creating games that will form a more significant part of the initial instruction.

Last Friday I introduced a new game, Snapshot Memory. Teams had 60 seconds to memorize the details in a painting by Vermeer and then another 60 seconds to list what they remembered from the painting, including artist, title and date. The competitive spirit in the room really motivated students to focus intently on artwork!

After 5 or 6 rounds the students were able to describe the artist's style, time period, subject matter, several titles of paintings - and I never lectured! Later, much to my surprise, they were able to select  a (new to them) "Vermeer" from a line-up of paintings. Who says art history is boring!!!


  1. I love this idea but the Bingo and snapshot memory links are not working. Do you still have the links.

    1. I too love this lesson but couldn't get the links to work either. Could you send me the link as well? Thanks

    2. The links have been repaired!


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