A Unit on Kings and Castles
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We made castles out of cereal boxes and paper towel tubes.
We made shields and silver crowns with jewels.
The castle turrets were spray painted and stapled to the castle.We copied paper doll figures to use to play with our castles.
Books to Read
How Big is a Foot
King Bidgood's in the Bathtub by Audrey Wood
The Sword in the Stone
Princess and the Pea
The Paper Bag Princess by Robert Munsch
The Knight and the Dragon by Tomie De Paola
Castles by Philip Steele
Knights in Shining Armor by Gail Gibbons
Castles by David Alderton
Song to Sing
I'm a Knight in Armor ("I'm a Little Teapot")
I'm a knight in armor look at me.
See how shiny I can be.
With my visor up my eyes you'll see;
But with it down it protects me.
Shoe Hunt; Bring in all different kinds of shoes and place one of each pair in a box. Hide the rest around the room and have the students find and match them to their mate.
Make a Knight's Helmet or sword. Crayola Kids for March 1997 had terrific directions with pictures to make these and other costumes.
Play "Capture the Dragon". This can be played just like tag.
Read various versions of Cinderella and compare and contrast.
Make magic wands.
Make a book about Cinderella's day. At 6 AM she is bringing in the firewood. At 7 AM she is making breakfast, etc.
Graph the class favorite princess tale.
Play Kiss the Frog. Instead of "Pin the Tail on the Donkey". Use paper lip kisses and a large poster frog on the wall.
Brainstorm and chart a list of possible main characters (and what they look like), villains, problem and solutions to a story. Then write your own class fairytale.
Play games (use for practice counting) with silver and gold coins. Cut circles out of cardboard and spray paint or cover with aluminum foil.
Watch Barney's Magic Kingdom videotape.
Listen to the song or watch the movie Puff, the Magic Dragon.
Eat a castle cake. Make a typical rectangular two layer cake (or buy pound cake already made). Use one layer as the base. Cut the corners of the other layer and put them on top of the corners of your base layer. Frost. Use candies to decorate. Use upside down ice cream cones to put on top of the corners. You can even fly little flags out of the top of the cones. Break a chocolate bar into rectangular pieces and use to make the windows and doors.
Play a CD-ROM game-- Fisher Price makes Great Adventures Castle and Broderbund makes Darby and the Dragon.
Background Information and Vocabulary
"For safety and for defense, people in the Middle Ages formed small communities around a central lord or master. Most people lived on a manor, which consisted of the castle, the church, the village, and the surrounding farm land. These manors were isolated, with occasional visits from peddlers, pilgrims on their way to the Crusades, or soldiers from other fiefdoms.
In this "feudal" system, the king awarded land grants or "fiefs" to his most important nobles, his barons, and his bishops, in return for their contribution of soldiers for the king's armies. At the lowest echelon of society were the peasants, also called "serfs" or "villeins." In exchange for living and working on his land, known as the "demesne," the lord offered his peasants protection." Learn more about this at http://www.learner.org/exhibits/middleages/feudal.htmlDrawbridge-
Drawbridge- A heavy timber platform built to span a moat between a gate house and surrounding land that could be raised when required to block an entrance.
Great Hall-- The building in the inner ward that housed the main meeting and dining area for the castle's residence.
GUILD--A term applied to trade associations. The aims of such association are to protect members from the competition of foreign merchants and maintain commercial standards. The first guilds where merchant guilds, later came craft guilds as industry has gotten more specialized. Guilds maintain a system of education, whereby apprentices serve a master for five to seven years before becoming a journeyman at about age nineteen. Journeymen work in the shop of a master until they can demonstrate to the leaders of his guild that they are ready for master status. Guild members are forbidden to compete with each other, and merchants are required to sell at a just price.
Moat--A deep trench dug around a castle to prevent access from the surrounding land. It could be either left dry or filled with water.
Siege-- The military tactic that involves the surrounding and isolation of a castle, town or army by another army until the trapped forces are starved into surrender.
Turret-- A small tower rising above and resting on one of the main towers, usually used as a look out point.
VILLEIN--The wealthiest class of peasant. They usually cultivate 20-40 Acres of land, often in isolated strips.
Wall Walk-- The area along the tops of the walls from which soldiers defend both castle and town.