Mrs. Brooks’ 4th grade class recently finished their unit on the Middle ages. We thought you might enjoy some highlights of what they learned as much as we did!
Students learned about:
- The class structure from the Middle Ages–called the feudal system. They learned about common practices in castles and about life in towns. This included learning about jesters, singing, instruments for entertainment, feasts, the market, jobs, trade, and how the banking system, universities, art, and architecture developed.
- Rats spreading the Black Death Plague.
- Fires, pickpockets and details about food. For example, serfs ate bread and water for breakfast and lunch and pottage for supper.
- The dress and technology of the time.
- The origin of the word “potty” — people used chamber pots since there was no plumbing. The pots were dumped into the street.
- Common building materials of the time, including stone for castles, and mud and wood “town” houses with hay roofs. People kept a bucket of water outside their door because fires from indoor cooking often caused houses to catch on fire.
- Knights and ladies, craftsmen, monks and nuns.
Students built cardboard castle models. The project was a good experiential learning experience, but also provided students with an opportunity for team building, planning, collaboration, problem-solving, goal setting, time management, and so on.
They also wrote a paper on who they would have liked to have been and why. This gave them insight into how the lives of people were different than they are today.
Students also wrote informational paragraphs about what a castle is and how a castle provided protection. This is the first time this year students wrote two paragraphs.
Students always love this unit and it is always a favorite. Last year’s students even stopped by to tell me how much they loved it! –Mrs. Brooks