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Investigating Castles: Part 2 (Comparing Past and Present)

Saturday, January 25, 2014

This week was a short week due to a holiday and a snow day, but it gave us enough time to dive into how life was different in the Medieval days compared to today! Through our research, we have found out that things were very different in those days!  To show how things were different, we decided to turn the inside of our room into a great hall. We created a Then/Now T-chart to organize the differences we had learned. Unfortunately I forgot to get a picture of it. Then we used it to decide what we needed to create. 

The kids learned that in the Medieval days, they did not have electricity so they did not have lights. They created torches to provide "light" for our room. 

The torches are also providing us with "light" all over the inside of our room but it was hard to get a picture that truly showed the effect! They embrace our doorway, promethium board, and windows! Next week, they are going to add "candle" chandeliers in the kitchen and over the banquet table.  They will also make "candles" for the banquet table.

They made a giant fire place at the end of the great hall to provide us with warmth since we learned castles didn't have furnaces.

One group decided to turn our home living area into a Medieval style kitchen. We learned that instead of stoves like we have today, they used cook fires. 

We still need to find a pot to hang over the fire!  Our friend below is creating a soup.

They learned that instead of faucets and sinks, they used wells and buckets. They also learned that servants had to carry buckets of water warmed over the fire all the way up to the master bathroom to fill up the bath! Much more work than turning on a faucet! They also used ashes and sheeps fat for soap!  They created a well with a bucket for the castle kitchen so they would have water.

They have learned other differences  such as how they entertained themselves that we will explore further next week.

The kids also explored the people who lived in the castles.  The nobels were called lords and ladies.  They learned that the nobels were leaders and their job was to take care of their people.  They were the ones who worked to solve the problems as leaders are supposed to do! Nobel families had coat of arms with pictures that represented their families.  The kids created coat of arms, some for us to hang and some to use as shields as the knights did.

They studied how they dressed.  We learned that married women had to keep their hair covered. That is why they wore beautiful hats. The girls worked on beautiful princess hats and both boys and girls created crowns beautiful enough for kings and queens. They are in the process of creating bracelets also. 

They also learned that the servants and some knights also lived in the castle and we talked about some of their jobs.  They noticed that jobs were harder to do back then because they did not have the technology that we have today!

Here are some other things going on during our exploration time!

Castle building with these awesome casltle blocks a wonderful teacher in my building found for me at Big Lots! Thank you Brittany!

Because of the sub zero weather we are having, the clay on our window sill is as hard as a rock. We decided they would make good bases for wire sculptures to work those finger muscles! Someone asked what "sculptures" means! We discussed how paintings are 2 dimensional art because they are flat. Sculptures are 3 dimensional art because they pop out! Of course they made the connection to our focus on the difference between 2 dimentional and 3 dimentional shapes! 

The students created a small winter world area using materials I set out for them. They will add more to this as more materials are set out. 

Stay tuned as next week we will talk about entertainment, knights and castle defense!

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