Outside the Castle

Outside the Castle lesson plan

Capture a character from your original story of life in a castle.

  • 1.

    During a unit of study on medieval times, invite students to explore information and pictures of people who lived during the era of the feudal system. Investigate feudal contracts that bound members of different social strata together. Research the lifestyles of the clergy, nobility, and commoners during this period. Organize a variety of text and electronic resources for students to view during this research.

  • 2.

    With research complete, ask students to create a fictional persona of a medieval man, woman, or child. Choose the person's social status, occupation, and responsibilities based on research on life in a feudal society. Students write a short, first-person, informal treatise on the life of the person using Crayola® Erasable Colored Pencils.

  • 3.

    Students create an expressive bas relief sculpture of their fictional characters. Demonstrate how to flatten Crayola Model Magic with your hands to form a slab. Use Crayola Scissors to cut pieces away to form straight sides.

  • 4.

    Cut and model free-form face and body shapes from flattened Model Magic and attach to the slab. Add other modeled forms and texture as desired. Use a craft stick to etch and push model magic on the face to create the desired expression. Attach pieces to each other with a slightly dampened finger. Dry.

  • 5.

    Students cover their work areas with recycled newspaper. Thin Crayola Tempera Paints with water, and combine colors for an antique effect. To stain the surface of sculptures, students brush on diluted paint. Wipe away excess paint with a paper towel or cotton swab. Dry.

  • 6.

    Students present their characters to small groups of classmates. During their talks, encourage students to include how their characters were a part of the feudal society.

Standards

  • LA: Integrate information from several texts on the same topic in order to write or speak about the subject knowledgeably.
  • LA: Write informative/explanatory texts to examine a topic and convey ideas, concepts, and information through the selection, organization, and analysis of relevant content.
  • LA: Engage effectively in a range of collaborative discussions with diverse partners on grade level topics and texts, building on others' ideas and expressing their own clearly.
  • LA: Report on a topic or text, tell a story, or recount an experience with appropriate facts and relevant, descriptive details, speaking clearly at an understandable pace.
  • SS: Explore and describe similarities and differences in the ways groups, societies, and cultures address similar human needs and concerns.
  • SS: Identify and use various sources for reconstructing the past, such as documents, letters, diaries, maps, textbooks, photos, and others.
  • SS: Use appropriate resources, data sources, and geographic tools to generate, manipulate, and interpret information.
  • SS: Identify examples of institutions and describe the interactions of people with institutions.
  • VA: Intentionally take advantage of the qualities and characteristics of art media, techniques, and processes to enhance communication of experiences and ideas.
  • VA: Select and use the qualities of structures and functions of art to improve communication of ideas.
  • VA: Compare the characteristics of works in two or more art forms that share similar subject matter, historical periods, or cultural context.
  • VA: Identify specific works of art as belonging to particular cultures, times, and places.

Adaptations

  • Possible classroom resources include: The Age of Feudalism by John Davenport; Feudalism by Jane Hurwitz; The Late Middle Ages by Adam Woog
  • Organize students into small groups with feudal ranks to form feudal estates. Students role play discussions and events that may have taken place in feudal society.
  • Students design period clothing from feudal times. Speaking and acting in the manner of a fictional persona from the feudal period, students answer questions and share information about feudal society with classroom visitors.
  • Explore the art and music of the Middle Ages in Europe. What instruments were played? How were books and music written? What art materials were readily available? What advances were made in literature and the arts? What was happening in the rest of the world during this period?