Posts Tagged ‘Middle Ages’

Shield Cake

Monday, April 11th, 2016


Instead of cooking a medieval feast as a culminating activity for a medieval unit study, why not bake this simple shield cake? You can have fun creating a coat of arms with candy on the top of the cake.

Begin by baking a rectangular cake, preferably chocolate. Cut one end of the cake into a triangular point. Then tape some foil to a piece of cardboard that is larger than the cake. Upend the cake onto the prepared foil.

Grab two tubs of white frosting, and tint one of them to be the background color for the shield. You can choose any color you want. Frost the entire cake, including the sides.


Now comes the fun part. Divide the second tub of frosting into different bowls, tinting them whatever colors you want to create your coat of arms, dragon, cross, or any other shape. Place the tinted frosting in a plastic Ziplock bag and snip off the corner. Draw whatever you want with the tinted frosting.

We used white frosting to frame the outline of the shield. We also outlined a Peppermint Patty and drew a cross in the center of it. You can now use whatever candy you want to embellish your shield cake. We used colorful M&M’s to go around the entire cake.

Now enjoy eating your medieval shield cake!

LEGO Castle

Monday, April 20th, 2015


My 11-year-old son Nathaniel built a castle out of regular LEGOs. You really don’t need to get an expensive castle kit; if you have regular LEGO bricks, you can build a LEGO castle of any shape and size as you study the Middle Ages.


Start with a green base. Find all the white LEGO pieces and dump them in a pile so that you don’t have to keep looking for more pieces while you build. Decide what shape you want the castle to be, and outline it on the LEGO base. Make sure you leave space for the entrance. For our castle, we have four castle keeps, one at each corner.


Start building up the walls, interlocking the LEGOs and staggering them so that the structure is sound. If you put a LEGO brick connecting two LEGO bricks, the structure is less likely to break apart. You can insert a design on the front with a different color, either in a shield shape or any other shape. The entrance can be made either as a rectangle or an arch. My son decided to make an arch with pillars on either side.


Keep building up the structure until you run out of white LEGOs. Then enjoy your LEGO castle!

For more hands-on activities for the Middle Ages, take a look at my Medieval Unit Study Pinterest board.


Medieval Wax Seal

Friday, June 8th, 2012


My husband bought a medieval wax seal before we were married and never used it. I jumped up and down and said, “Can we use it, please?” He finally relented. It was brand new, and I suppose he never intended to use it. He just thought it was cool.

The kit included three waxy metallic candles in blue, dark red, and gold. It also included the letter “E,” which stands for “Evans,” our family name.


We lit the candles and dripped the wax in a puddle to seal a letter. The children had each written a letter to God, which they sealed, only to open when they are adults.

The seal was made out of metal. It was heavy for its size. You press the seal into the hot wax. It leaves an imprint. Then you wait for the wax to cool before lifting it up and looking at it.


If you don’t have a medieval wax seal, I suppose you could use candle wax and a rubber stamp. But it might ruin your rubber stamp, so choose a stamp you don’t like. You could use a stamp that represents your child, like a monkey stamp for my daughter, who climbs on top of everything, including the roof of the neighbor’s shed.

Now the children each have a letter that has been sealed with our family seal. My husband let each child press the seal into the melted wax.


Medieval Unit Study

Friday, September 2nd, 2011

medieval-unit-studyThis video shows you the hands-on activities we will be doing for our Medieval Unit Study. The activities include building large and small cardboard castles, shield-making, catapult and trebuchet models, archery, and a Medieval feast.

Medieval Unit Study: Hands-on Activities:

I’ve linked to a few activities to get you started with this time period:

Life-sized cardboard castle, medieval feast, cathedral tour, and more in the Unit Study Treasure Vault!