Substantive Education

History and Art of the Middle Ages

Students should be half way through their books.  In class tomorrow I plan on assessing where they all are.  Since we have been covering related topics on Fridays we haven’t been focusing on the content in the book.  Don’t worry, we are working our way back to it.

However, for this week and next week we will be examining the illuminated manuscripts of the age, along with some of the other art work typical of this period.

In recent weeks we have studied the various religions that were prominent in the Middle Ages.  Although most students are familiar with Christianity, many are not familiar with Islam, Hinduism, Buddhism, and Judaism.  All were being practiced during the Middle Ages and this led to many of the conflicts of the age.

We have also looked at the construction of a castle and how it was planned to be able to withstand a seige.  The kids had some pretty creative ideas for how they would build a castle.

See bottom of the page for the course description

We will be playing a game in our Middle Ages class.  Here are the questions…all of the answers are in your book in the Chapters on Mohammed…6,7 and 8.

What was the name Muhammad was known as when he was a young man?

Why did Muhammad spend time alone?

What happened in the cave that Muhammad stayed in?

When Muhammad and Abu Baku hid in the cave What happened?

What happened after Muhammad started preaching in Mecca

What was the reaction to Muhammad’s vision

What is Muhammad’s journey from Mecca to Medina called?

Name the holy book of Islam.

Name the five pillars of Islam.

Wat did the people of Medina think of Muhammad’s teachings?

What was the biggest problem in Medina?

How did Muhammad solve the food shortage?

The leaders of Mecca got mad.  What happened?

Muhammad died.  What happened to the empire.

What was Abu Bakr’s new title?  Abu Bakr ordered Muslim soldiers to attack and capture who?

How far did the soldiers take Islam?

What did the caliphs call the new capital of the Islamic Empire?

Homework given Oct.ber 16th.  You should be reading in your books past chapter 8.  Review and get very familiar with the information presented on the birth of Islam.  Remember you will be giving presentations in class this week on the religious groups that you were researching.

Homework given on October 2nd.  You should have read through chapter 6 in your books.  Also, be working on your coat of arms.  You will need to turn in a rough draft of it for approval before you do the full size one.  We will continue to work on ballads in class.  I haven’t had a chance to post the information on the cave monestaries of the Buddhist monks, but I will try to get it up soon.

Homework assigned Sept. 18th.  Read chapters 3 and 4 in your book.  Also review the hand out on Coat of Arms.  Begin to think of ideas of what you would like to have on your Coat of Arms.  You can do a google search on Coat of Arms, then click images to see more examples.

Homework given Sept. 11.  Read the first two chapters of your book.

Do the handout on ballads. While we will be working on writing a ballad in our groups, you can begin to jot down ideas.  Ballads and epic poems like Beowulf were used to transmit history and culture during a time when most people did not read.  The ballads were entertainment, but in ways that a history book can’t, they give us a peak at what the people of an era were like.  For instance listen the to music of the 60’s, 70’s and 80’s.  Each reflects the decade in which it was created and will give those who come after us a slice of life during that time.  In the same way making ourselves familiar with the art and music of an era helps to fill out the details that dates and maps can’t.  (And don’t worry, we’ll get to the dates and maps.)

For this class we will be delving in the years between the end of the fall of Rome and the early Renaissance.  Although this is referred to as the Dark Ages there was much going on.  This is the era of Castles and Knights, Crusades, and the establishing of the Church.  Kings, Kingdoms, Philosophers, and Scientist all gathered on the world stage and began to usher in the Modern Age.  There is much to be learned from these men of the ‘Dark Ages’ and I’m looking forward to the journey.

For a base we will be working through Susan Wise Bauer’s book.  A History of the World, Volume 2.  That will provide reading at home…and I will post a list of novels that you might also consider adding in to your studies.  Along with that we will be planning a medieval feast, making family crests, and exploring the troubling history of the Crusades.  It promises to be a fun study.

Check back here for study notes and homework assignments.


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