The first project introduced 2nd graders to one of my favorite subjects: architecture. Castles were private homes built in the Middle Ages which started around 1000 A.D. They were different from regular homes of the time because they were made of stone instead of wood or plaster and they were fortified.
We focused on the different parts of a castle including crenelations, parapets, the keep, moats, and dungeons. While castles continued to be built well into the 1700's improved cannon fire made them more prone to attacks. Contrary to popular belief, castles were actually uncomfortable and undesirable places to live! In the 1800's castles started being built for the purpose of aesthetic beauty instead of military use.