- The word Medieval inspires all kinds of associations in our minds. Some of them we have learned from study, some from TV or movies and others from stories and fairytales, but not all of them are true.
- As a class, brainstorm what the word Medieval makes you think.
- Once a list is formed, ask the class to work out where these associations come from/where they have heard these things. Group them together.
- How many come from fact (for example, books, documentaries)? How many from fiction (for example, movies, fairytales)?
- Investigate one or more of these associations to find out if they are real or made up about the Medieval period.
- The word Medieval comes from the Latin phrase “medium aevum” meaning middle age. It was used by scholars in the 1600s to describe the era between the ancient world and their own. Modern English uses many words that have Latin roots or parts.
- Identify a list of words with Latin roots or use some of the examples below:
- Assign a word to a group of students. Have them use a dictionary or online search to find the Latin root of each word. Some words will have evolved to modern English from Latin through other languages in between.
- As an extension, challenge students to find as many words of Latin origin as they can, using an online search in a set time.
- How many of them do we use in our everyday lives?
- The medieval period in Europe was a time of great social change. After the fall of the Roman Empire, many new nations emerged in Europe and had to find stability and ways to thrive. However, in other parts of the world, people in other societies were thriving or rising to meet challenges of their own.
- Using the time frame of 476 CE to 1685 CE, have students investigate another region of the world and a society therein. Students can pick a time, or the teacher may choose a time for them.
- Create a country profile of the identified nation. Try to include some of the following:
- Geography in which the society lives
- Social structure
- Extent of territory during the chosen time
- Belief system
- Goods produced
- Major cities, regions, areas
- Relationships with other societies