Monday, September 25, 2006

Medieval Immersion for Kids

I wish they had this when I was a kid:
Hundreds of elementary and middle school students will "go medieval" for a day as the Historic Camelot Project, a Wisconsin educational nonprofit organization, holds two days of hands-on education at Fireman's Park in Fox Lake.

Beginning at 9 a.m. Wednesday and Thursday, Sept. 27 and 28, Camelot will host two two-hour blocks of educational presentations that present daily life in medieval Britain. Presentations will be followed by a short demonstration of knightly weapons and horsemanship.

Students will also become involved in medieval cooking, building wattle fences and walls, and dipping candles, as well as lectures on early medieval life and history.

This will be the first of its kind of "immersion" education in medieval history in the Midwest, giving students and teachers a small taste of what will be a daily offering at the medieval village museum Camelot is hoping to open in Southcentral Wisconsin.

"While there are abundant opportunities for students to visit historical, open-air museums depicting early life in Wisconsin and in Colonial America if you go back East, there are none of the pre-medieval and medieval village museums available as they are in Europe," said Lloyd Clark, Camelot executive director. "This is their history also, but one that is not given sufficient weight.

"What we hope to create with the Historic Camelot Village Museum is a recreation of typical pre-medieval life in Britain, much the same as Old World Wisconsin shows life in 1800s Wisconsin — with a small, traditional indoor museum to showcase the changes in British clothing, arms and armor, and typical items of daily life over the period from just after Rome left Britain to the Late Middle Ages."

. . . Clark hopes to kindle a new appreciation in children for their ancestors and to showcase not just the kings, knights, arms and armor but the lives of the "regular" people of the age.

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