Build a Medieval Castle Activity
The Middle Ages were a turbulent time in history that required kings to have strong castles for protection against invaders. Your child can now recreate history by building his very own fortified castle.
What You Need:
- Box, shallow with any top flaps removed
- Strips of newspaper
- Wallpaper paste
- White glue
- Card stock
- Tempera paint
- Craft knife
- Toilet paper rolls (4–8)
What You Do:
- Place a toilet paper roll on each corner of the shallow box. Have your child use a ruler to measure the space from the inner edge of the paper roll on one side to the inner edge of the paper roll on the other side.
- Measure out the same distance on the card stock and cut out a rectangle. This will be one of the four castle walls.
- Your child can create battlements on the castle wall on the top part of the card stock. Repeat this process for all 4 walls.
- Have him designate a wall that will be the front door. Cut out an arch-shaped door on the wall. Set the cut-out piece of card stock to the side. This will be your drawbridge.
- Draw a flat cone shape on the card stock. It should look like a circle, but it will be missing a quarter piece, like a pie missing a large slice. Cut this piece out and trace it 3 more times on the card stock.
- Cut out the rest of the traced shapes. Take one and make the edges overlap slightly. Then, staple the edges together. Repeat for all 4 pieces. These cones will serve as the tops of the turrets and will go on the top of the toilet paper rolls. Set them aside for now though.
- Tape the toilet paper rolls in place.
- Tape the bottom and sides of the card stock walls, and place them in position one at a time.
- Dip one strip of newspaper into the wallpaper paste mixture. Run the paper through your fingers to remove excess paste. Place one strip at a time and pat it down flat. Repeat this process over the entire castle structure. Make at least 2–3 layers of newspaper strips. Allow to dry completely overnight.
- Help your child attach the paper cones to the tops of the turrets using white glue.
- Paint your castle and add details using tempera paint. Paint your drawbridge (the piece of card stock that was cut from the front door). Have your child attach strings to both sides of the drawbridge and affix the strings with glue to the inside wall of the front door. Allow to dry.
- Proudly display a castle fit for a king! If he wants, have your child add paper cut-outs of people or decorations to complete his very own medieval scene!
Ellen Dean has worked as an art educator in Thailand since 2005, working with both children and adults. She has also been a professional artist working in painting, sculpture and photography since 1996.