Teaching Medieval History to Grammar, Logic, & Rhetoric Stages

Back in January I shared some of our favorite resources for teaching Ancient History, for all stages of learning. This year we’re covering Medieval History and I thought I would create a similar post of resources.
teaching medieval history
Just a reminder: we follow a four year, chronological History cycle. The only one of my children who will get 3 rounds of complete world history is our oldest, because I include the younger children with the period she is studying. And that is OK.

Everyone will have had at least two full rounds (plus another year or two) by the time they graduate our homeschool and I am confident that this will equip them in their futures. The primary goal is for each child to have a basic grasp of when / where / why things happened throughout history.

History Spines for Teaching Medieval History

Grammar Stage:
Our grammar stage students use The Story of the World Volume 2 by Susan Wise Bauer.
Logic Stage:
Our logic stage students listen in to the read aloud of The Story of the World and also add outlining from The Kingfisher History Encyclopedia.
Rhetoric Stage:
Our rhetoric stage student is reading through Susan Wise Bauer’s The History of the Medieval World.

There is a study guide supplement for this but we are NOT using it. We don’t use the tests available for the grammar stage, either, because I am not concerned with testing in the younger years.

How We Study Medieval History Each Week

My grammar and logic Stage students listen to The Story of the World Volume 2 audiobook, read by Jim Weiss.
While they’re listening, they color a page from the activity book. When the chapter is over we do the corresponding map work.

Depending on the subject matter of each chapter, we may do extra activities I’ve found, or extra coloring pages. My logic stage student enjoys putting together the related lapbook found here.

Our logic stage student reads the corresponding HIstory Encyclopedia pages and uses our outline sheet my husband created:

The rhetoric age student takes notes of her reading and copies important maps into her notebook.

If you are looking for more notebooking pages to supplement your history study:
Middle Ages History Notebooking Pages
Notebooking Pages also has great printable maps:
World Maps Notebooking Pages
And timelines:
History Timeline / Book of Centuries Notebooking Pages
And yes, Notebooking Pages is an affiliate. Because I love their printables and use them often! (To see more things that I recommend, check out my Consider page!)

Supplemental Reading for Teaching Medieval History

There are so many wonderful reading lists for this topic, but these are a few of our favorites:
I considered using The Time Traveler’s Guide to Medieval England as the spine for our rhetoric student, but I decided Medieval England wasn’t quite a broad enough topic to cover the entire medieval world. Still, we very much enjoy this book.
Famous Men of the Middle Ages also makes a good spine for a logic age student studying the middle ages.
The Illustrated HIstory of the Kings and Queens of Britain is a great resource for short biographies of British rulers from the Romans to Elizabeth II. Lots of paintings and portraits make this interesting even for younger children to look through.
Don’t Know Much About the Kings and Queens of England is a similar book designed for children.
Days of Knights and Damsels has inspired many hours of activities for my grammar and logic stage students.

More Books and Resources for Teaching Medieval History

(These are links to Amazon, but be sure to check your favorite local thrift or secondhand book stores!):

My favorite book guide for teaching medieval history is this one from Mt. Hope Chronicles.

We have a large basket in our school room where I keep all our history (and science) related reading for the school year. Each week I have the kids choose a book to read (based on ability level) and we also have books that we read aloud together.

Our rhetoric age student has an assigned reading list (including Beowulf, Dante’s Inferno, Sir Gawain by Tolkien, etc.) to work through at her own pace. Some of her medieval reading is assigned from a co-op class she’s taking and some comes from reading lists chosen by me.

At the very least we want to read aloud these books types or adaptations while studying Medieval History:

  • Celtic Myths
  • Norse Myths
  • Beowulf – there are so many great editions of this, including picture book versions
  • Books about rulers of England
  • Living Books about life during the time (for instance: Adam of the Road)
  • Books about castles, knights, or other non-fiction about the period
  • Anything about Shakespeare, his plays, or other suitable adaptations
  • Books about early explorers

We also have a few other items in our history kit that the kids love.

Things like: paper dolls, coloring books, and other paper craft type supplements.

What are your favorite resources for studying the middle ages? Favorite read alouds? I’d love to pin your links to my SOTW 2 board!

teaching medieval history pin
Dover Books

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