Group Gops

Type of Activity:  Problem Solving, Competition, Consensus

Sources:  Playing With A Full Deck by Michelle Cummings 

Props Needed:  Playing cards

Group Size:  10-26 participants

 Competitive Game

How to win:  capture the greatest number of cards from the diamond suit.

Setting up the Cards:  Divide your deck as follows:  Take out all the hearts—they are not used in this game.  Take the diamonds, shuffle them well, and place them in a pile face down between the two groups.

Playing the Game:  Divide your group into two teams.  Each team is given one suit, either spades or clubs as their hand.  It doesn’t matter which suit, but they should not be mixed.

Turn the top diamond over and pace it face up on the table.  Now both teams have a chance to bid for the diamond.  Each group comes to consensus on which card they want to bring to the center for bidding.  One member of each group brings the chosen card face down to the center.

Simultaneously the players turn over their cards.  The higher card (aces are low) wins the diamond.  If the spade and club cards bid are of the same value, it is a tie, and neither team gets the diamond in this round.  Another diamond is then turned over and the bidding process is repeated.  The winner of the second round gets both the diamonds.  Once played, the black cards stay in the center; they cannot be reused.

The diamonds are turned over and bid for, until they have all been taken.  If there is a tie on the last diamond, when there are no black cards left, roll a dice or toss a coin for heads and tails.


Method 1:  The simplest way to score Group Gops is simply to count the number of diamonds gained by each team:  the one with the most is the winner.

Method 2:  Add the value of each player’s diamonds, from 1 (ace) to 11 (jack), 12 (queen) to 13 (king).  The first player to reach or pass an agreed total—say, 100—is the winner.

Debriefing Topics

  • How did your individual group come to consensus on which card was going to be taken to the center for bidding?
  • Did everyone feel like their ideas were heard in each group?
  • How does competition have a place in our workplace/school/group?
  • Name some of the feelings you felt while playing this game.

Learning styles utilized from the 7 Kinds of Smart:  ~logic smart, body smart, people smart, word smart

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