To understand the role of lords, vassals, knights, and serfs in the system of feudalism.
1 class period
The class is divided into groups of three or four students. Each group will have a gameboard, 24 cards, 1 die, and 2 colored markers for each player. The gameboard is formed by attaching the third and fourth lesson pages.
Players in each group will roll the die to see who goes first. The person with the highest number begins, and play continues to the left. Player 1 will put one of his two colored markers on space 20 of his scoring column in the center of the gameboard. Other players will do likewise. All players will then place their second colored marker on the corner space START. The 24 cards will be shuffled and placed alongside the gameboard.
The game begins when player 1 rolls the die and moves the number of spaces shown. Player 1 then reads aloud the information inside the space on which he has landed. Usually, a player will gain or lose 1 or 2 points. When this happens, their marker in the scoring column is moved forward or backward the appropriate number of spaces.
Any person who rolls a 6 will get another turn in addition to their regular turn.
Sometimes a player will land on a space marked TAKE A CARD. This player will remove the top card from the pile and read it aloud. The card will usually cause one or more players to gain or lose points. Each card tells about something which affects either knights, serfs, vassals, or lords. At various times during the game, a player is either a knight, serf, vassal, or lord depending on which side of the gameboard he is moving along at the time. The only exception to this is that a player is none of these people when he is on a corner space marked TAKE A CARD, TOURNAMENT, or START. Thus, the person who draws and reads the card is never affected by what it says. Only the other players are affected, unless also on TAKE A CARD, TOURNAMENT, or START.
Whenever someone lands on TOURNAMENT, each person along the “knight row” is affected. In the Middle Ages, a tournament involved competition in the form of a “joust” between two knights. In a joust, the knights charged at each other on horseback carrying a blunt, spear-like weapon. The knight who knocked the other off his horse was the winner. In this game, when a TOURNAMENT space is landed on, each knight (if there are any) will roll the die once. If they roll a 4, 5, or 6, they have won their joust and score 2 points. If they roll 1, 2, or 3, they have been knocked off their horse and lose 1 point.
If at any time during the game a player loses all of his points, he is out of the game. The winner of THE GAME OF FEUDALISM will be the first person to score 40 points. If no one has 40 points by the end of the period, then the winner is the player with the most points at that time.
Easy-to-follow Teacher Instructions and answer key included, along with a 20-question follow up quiz to measure student progress. The quiz can also be given as a homework assignment or used as a review exercise later in the school year.