Saturday, June 2, 2007

Collection of Info 2

Renaissance/Reformation File

1. Biographies we liked for the Renaissance: Joan of Arc; Soldier Saint, Morning Star of the Reformation as well as several by Louise Vernon: The Bible Smuggler (William Tyndale), The Man Who Laid the Egg (Erasmus), and Thunderstorm in the Church (Martin Luther). My ds read a biography about Leonardo DaVinci by Emily Hahn, which was a bit dry in the beginning, but once into it, he really enjoyed it. My ds also highly recommends Renaissance fiction The Trumpeter of Krakow.

2. A marvelous art book is Art Fraud Detective by Anna Nilsen. This is like a mystery book in which the reader has to spot forgeries in some masterpieces in an art gallery. The originals are shown with a little background on each painter. My kids are loving just looking for clues and hearing about the various artists.

3. A book that is not to be missed is The Apprentice by Pilar Molina Llorente. We also enjoyed these:
Leonardo daVinci for Kids,
Michelangelo by Diane Stanley
The Renaissance Art Book: Discover Thirty Glorious Masterpieces by Leonardo Da Vinci,
Michelangelo, Raphael, Fra Angelico, Botticelli By Wenda O'Reilly
We did some of the activities in these books: Discovering Great Artists and Art in Story.

4. I, Juan de Paraja by Elizabeth Borton de Trevino is a wonderful book about a slave working for Velasquez (a Spanish painter). The characters are all based on fact. The Shakespeare Stealer by Gary Blackwood is another good one. The 2nd Mrs. Gianconda by E. L. Konisburg is about Leonardo da Vinci. There are several good ones about the different reformers by Louise A. Vernon.

5. Videos: Most of these videos are available through Christian Book Distributors, but may be found in your library as well.
videos on Rome and Italy, and the Sistine Chapel
The Life of Leonardo Da Vinci (excellent but long)
John Hus
God's Outlaw - The Story of William Tyndale
Joan of Arc - the 1948 version
The History of English (found this at the library and watched the first two parts)
The Agony and the Ecstasy - a movie about Michelangelo starring Charlton Heston.
We listened to an audio CD set from the Library - Shakespeare for Kids (Midsummer Night's Dream and Taming of the Shrew). I also found this site with a listing of different movies for the period; of course, I suggest you review movies if you are not familiar with them.

6. Here is a list of books we have read:
Martin Luther by May McNeer (a young people's biography)
Leonardo Da Vinci the Universal Genius by Iris Noble (old, but great bio)
Spy for the Night Riders by Dave Jackson. A story of intrigue based on Martin Luther' s life
Along Came Galileo by Jeanne Bendick
General Info. and links:
I. General Sites
This site may have some very helpful stuff to use with LA!

I just had to share this site with you as I have been browsing looking for Renaissance sites for my teenagers. Everyone, no matter what age, should get a kick out of the info on this page, which explains the nursery rhyme "Sing a Song of Sixpence." It has a recipe on how to make a pie out of which live birds can fly when you cut into it. (Reportedly one nobleman who was feeling mischievous had his pies filled with live frogs to make the ladies shriek!)
Great site for history study (all periods of history study) and provides some written work for the kids if that is what you want. Click on the "download quiz” in the upper right hand corner of the page and it accesses the info booklet you can print out, and the worksheets and tests. They are available in PDF and Microsoft 2000. I downloaded both and that way I can alter the page if I see fit. Permission is granted on the web site to do that.

Reformation Sourcebook Fordham University
Renaissance & Medieval
Renaissance Sourcebook Fordham University

II. Astronomy/Solar Systems
This site may have some very helpful stuff to use with LA!
Go to, type in your zip code, get your weather and on the left hand side under the astronomy button get the constellation chart for your area.
Space unit at
Amazing Space site & more on-line lessons, Hubble telescope, & more
A great web page with a LOT of links for unit studies. (There was about 5 or 6 on Space.)

A. Coloring pages/Worksheets on solar system:
Here are some coloring pages with information about the planets:
Print-outs (elementary) about solar system (pgs.2-13)
Create a solar system to scale:
Some other fun print-outs: has some neat space coloring, labeling and craft ideas. There are links to find out how to figure how much you would weigh on the moon, Mars, and the other planets (math).
There are some great worksheets covering different subjects (math, science,etc.) all about space here:

B. Space flip books
Nice site for space flipbooks, which can be used in a lap book or notebook. Also contains online information.

C. Astronomy games There is a game section, and an astronomy section under that. We did all 3 levels of play, had some fun, and amazed ourselves at the knowledge we already possessed.
I haven't played any of these yet, but it looks good.
just have to say, that my older son just completed day 136 and had so much fun making up his own game based on astronomy. He used a piece of cardboard and made the game from that. He added Q/A cards that he made up (with answers on the back.) You had to answer a question every time you reached a planet.
Then, my younger son (6) decided he wanted to make a game too - his is so much different - not as educational, but more of a fun value. He made his using "warp speed", black holes, and aliens. Quite fun to play and very challenging. I was quite surprised at how much thought he put into his game.

III. Biographies
Galileo Project his life and works
Leonardo's Workshop
Someone has changed history! You must travel back in time to the Renaissance and explore Leonardo da Vinci's workshop in search of clues.

Martin Luther
Leonardo da Vinci
Isaac Newton
IV. Art/Music
Classics for Kids This site is fantastic! You can use this site to teach about the classical composers. You can listen to stories about the composers, listen to their music, see a timeline, and play games.
The Symphony: An Interactive Guide
Here is a great link to music and composers down thru history.
Here is the blurb from the site: "Whether you're a casual listener or a serious music student, here's the site for basic information about classical music. Created in cooperation with W.W. Norton & Company, it's built around Essential Classics, the series specially designed to introduce you to the best music of every period. All through the site you'll find almost 200 excerpts from Essential Classics.
You'll also find:
Eras: Overviews of the six main periods in music history -- Middle Ages, Renaissance, Baroque, Classical, Romantic and Twentieth Century.
Composers: Brief biographies of nearly 70 composers, which will bring to life the artists and their works.
Glossary: 200 definitions with numerous musical examples."
Handel's Masterpiece Of Faith - Bio for Ren & Ref (This site also has several other Christian bios, including Susanna Wesley and Martin Luther.)
I have tried a few songs here: .
Hymmal music online. Here is a list (I think I got them all) of links to midi files. The majority has some great information too. [Ed.: I have not checked these links for accuracy.]
O Come, O Come Emmanuel -
All Creatures of Our God and King -
Prayer of St. Francis - (More than one version/music) -
A Mighty Fortress is Our God -
Now Thank We All Our God -
Praise to the Lord, the Almighty -
Sing Praise to God Who Reigns Above -
Fairest Lord Jesus -
Be Still My Soul -
All Glory, Laud and Honor -
Jesus the Very Thought of Thee -
Oh Sacred Head, Now Wounded
Be Thou My Vision -
Doxology -
When I Survey the Wondrous Cross -
Jesus Shall Reign -
Joy to the World -
All People on Earth Do Dwell -
The Lord is my Shepherd -
O God, Our Help in Ages Past -
I Sing the Mighty Power of God -
While Shepherds Watched Their Flocks -
We Gather Together -
(Day 150) Let Everything That Has Breath, Praise the Lord. Ok, not in the curriculum, but this is a wonderful song that can get kids praising God with contemporary music. "Everything That - Has Breath". Found on WOW Worship, Songs for Worship and Shout To The Lord Kids! . Check with your local Christian Book/Music store. Powerful, jumping and hand clapping type song. (Phillips, Craig and Dean sing this (my preference), as well as a some other groups such as Passion.)
Pictures of the Mona Lisa to print and color are found on There are also coloring pictures there from Michelangelo and Raphael.
Wonderful site with most of the artists and samples of their works.
Click on Mark Harden's Artchive: "Artchive"; click on an artists name; scroll to the bottom of the page; click on thumbnails to see examples of the artist's work. For example...when Leonardo da Vinci is introduced (p.536 / Day 124 / Renaissance unit) you could look at thumbnails of the Mona Lisa, The Last Supper, etc. Very nice!
Renaissance art link:
Lots of info about the artists and step-by-step art lessons to try (drawing portraits, etc.) Click here: Art Education and ArtEdventures from Sanford and A Lifetime of Color Click here: Scribbles - The Masters Click here: Scribbles - Art Projects Lots of great ideas & info in these sites!
National Gallery of Art Loaner Program Over 150 teaching resources are loaned free of charge to educational institutions, community groups, and individuals. Programs are designed to meet national standards in the visual arts. The catalogue is indexed by subject area and presentation format. Resources available include DVDs, videotapes, slides, multi-media, and PDFs.
+ We found the series, Getting to Know the World's Greatest Artists, very fun to look at and read! I purchased them from curric. suppliers but noticed the School Box store had them as well.
+ We are currently using the "Renaissance" section from a book entitled DISCOVERING GREAT ARTISTS by MaryAnn Kohl. It gives a hands-on project for each artist mentioned. For instance, for Ghiberti, the students make a Florentine relief, for Van Eyck a triptych panel and for Michelangelo they paint lying down on their backs. Other artists mentioned for this time period include: Angelico, Masaccio, Botticelli, Da Vinci, Durer, and Raphael. The ISBN is 0-935607-09-9.
After my class read the book, From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler, my students wanted to know a little more about the famous artist, Michelangelo. We then did a mini-unit studying about his life and paintings. One of his most famous pieces of work is the painting on the Sistine Chapel ceiling. My students couldn't believe that he could do all that while painting up side down. To give them a taste of what that might be like, I had each of them tape a piece of white drawing paper underneath their desks and gave each one their own watercolor set. They got underneath their desks, flat on their backs, looking up at their picture. They were to paint a picture using this method. They thought it was wonderful and we had some pretty interesting paintings!
Renaissance Life:
(Info. taken from a friend's wedding at the Ren. Faire in Council Bluffs, IA the summer of '02.)
The basics of today's wedding ceremony has remained very similar to what it was hundreds of years ago. Most of what has changed over the years has been the addition and evolution of the traditions that are part of the ceremony and reception. Here are a few of the traditions from the past that we will be incorporating into our wedding.
In the thirteenth century, the medieval Church announced intended marriages through a process called the banns of marriage. The banns were proclaimed in the parish church for three successive weeks during Sunday worship, and the practice continued in Scotland for over six hundred years. We will post the banns of marriage below and have them announced before the ceremony.
Herein do I publish the banns of marriage for... If there be any reason why these two should not be lawfully wed, then approach now. This is the first time of asking.
The processional used to be quite different with the bride, groom, attendants, families and friends all going to the church together. We will walk through the Faire to the wedding with a processional.
Before the popularization of the white wedding dress, women simply wore their best dress. .... Wedding dress will be blue.
Herbs were once more popular in bouquets than flowers. To down play the use of flowers in our wedding, embroidered handkerchiefs will be used in place of boutonnieres and corsages, and bouquets will contain more greenery than flowers.
Walking through an arc of swords following the ceremony was done to ensure the couple's safe passage into their new life together. We will walk through an arc of swords at the end of the ceremony.
In the Middle Ages the guests of a wedding would bring small cakes and stack them together. It became traditional for the couple to kiss over a cluster of small cakes. Later, a clever baker decided to amass all these small cakes together, covering them with frosting. Instead of a tiered wedding cake, we will have a stack of Scottish shortbreads.
Most of life's important events are filled with traditions. Here you
can find out more about some wedding traditions and how they
To get things started, here is an old poem about choosing the
day for a wedding.
Monday for health, Tuesday for wealth, Wednesday best of all,
Thursday for losses, Friday for crosses, Saturday for no luck at all.
Most people now ignore this poem and choose Saturday, most
likely because it is the most convenient day for their out of town wedding guests.
Pre-wedding Traditions
The custom of proposing on one knee hearkens back to the days of chivalry when it was
customary for a knight to dip his knee in a show of servitude to his mistress.
In earlier times, the engagement, or betrothal ring, was a partial payment for the bride and
was a pledge of the groom's intentions.
Ancient Greeks believing the fire of a diamond reflected the flame of love, actually thought
them to be teardrops from the gods. Ancient Romans also endowed them with romantic
powers, believing diamonds to be splinters from falling stars that tipped the arrows of the
Eros, the god of love. In the Middle Ages diamonds were credited with the power to reunite
estranged marriage partners
Back during the times when marriages were arranged, the bride was expected to have a dowry. The dowry was money, goods, or estate that she brought to her husband, which was provided by the bride's family. In return, the groom paid a "price" for the bride and promised to provide for and support her.
The word trousseau comes from the French word, trousseau, which means bundle. The trousseau originally was a bundle of clothing and personal possessions the bride carried with her to her new home. The trousseau includes all of the new items for the household, as well as for the bride herself.
The bridal shower has its roots in Holland. When a bride's father did not approve of the husband-to-be, he would not provide her with the necessary dowry. The bride's friends would therefore "shower" her with gifts so she would have her dowry and thus marry the man of her choice.
Ancient Spartan soldiers were the first to hold bachelor parties. The groom would feast with his male friends on the night before the wedding. There he would say good-bye to the carefree days of bachelorhood and swear continued allegiance to his comrades.
Finally, a poem about selecting the wedding month:
Married when the year is new, he’ll be loving, kind & true.
When February birds do mate, You wed nor dread your fate.
If you wed when March winds blow, joy and sorrow both you’ll know.
Marry in April when you can, Joy for Maiden & for Man.
Marry in the month of May, and you’ll surely rue the day.
Marry when June roses grow, over land and sea you’ll go.
Those who in July do wed, must labor for their daily bread.
Whoever wed in August be, many a change is sure to see.
Marry in September’s shrine, your living will be rich and fine.
If in October you do marry, love will come but riches tarry.
If you wed in bleak November, only joys will come, remember.
When December snows fall fast, marry and true love will last.
Wedding Party Traditions
During ancient times when a man captured his bride-to-be, he would take along the best swords man to help fight off any opposition. A best man around AD 200 carried more than a ring. Since there remained the real threat of the bride's family attempting to forcibly gain her return, the best man stayed by the groom's side throughout the marriage ceremony, alert and armed. For such an important task, only the best man would do.
When the groom was about to abduct his bride, he needed the help of many friends, the "bridesmen" or "brideknights." The "gentlemen" would make sure the bride got to the ceremony on time and to the groom’s house afterwards.
Inviting women to be members of your bridal party dates back to ancient times. One Roman custom was to dress the bridesmaids in a fashion similar to the bride's to confuse evil spirits trying to kidnap the bride. Bridesmaids also had the role of fending off unsuitable suitors, leaving the bride for her groom.
Clothing and Accessory Traditions
Queen Victoria popularized the white wedding dress. Before that time, women simply wore their best dress.
A poem about wedding dress colors:
Married in White, you have chosen right,
Married in Grey, you will go far away,
Married in Black, you will wish yourself back,
Married in Red, you will wish yourself dead,
Married in Green, ashamed to be seen,
Married in Blue, you will always be true,
Married in Pearl, you will live in a whirl,
Married in Yellow, ashamed of your fellow,
Married in Brown, you will live in the town.

The wedding veil originated in ancient times from the belief that brides and grooms should not see each other until after the wedding ceremony. A young bride always wore her hair long and loose as a sign of her youth and innocence.
This good luck saying dates back to Victorian times, though the traditions that the poem is based on are much older. Something Old represents the link with the bride's family and the past. Something New represents good fortune and success and her hopes for a bright future in her new life. Something Borrowed is to remind the bride that friends and family will be there for her when help is needed. Borrowing is especially important, since it is to come from a happily married woman, thereby lending the bride some of her own marital bliss to carry into the new union. Something Blue is the symbol of faithfulness and loyalty. A Silver Sixpence in her Shoe is to wish the bride wealth.
The carrying of a bouquet by the bride has its roots in ancient times when it was believed that strong smelling herbs and spices would ward off and drive away evil spirits, bad luck and ill health. Herbs and later flowers were given special meanings.
The groom's boutonniere is a nod to medieval times when a knight wore his lady's "colors," proudly displayed for all to see.
Ceremony Traditions
Because the early groom so often had to defend his bride from would-be kidnappers, she stood to his left, leaving his sword-arm free.
Early farmers thought a bride's wedding day tears were lucky and brought rains for their crops. Later, a crying bride meant that she'd never shed another tear about her marriage.
The ancients Romans thought that a special vein, which they called a "vena amoris" or vein of love, ran from the finger directly to the heart. By putting on a fitted ring, the affections were bound in and could never flow out the finger tips
The custom of the wedding march dates back to the royal marriage of Victoria, princess of Great Britain, and Empress of Germany, to Prince Frederick William of Prussia.
No ceremony is complete without the kiss. Dating back from early Roman times, the kiss represented a legal bond that sealed all contracts.
Beginning in the Middle Ages, rice became a symbol of fruitfulness and it was thrown as a symbol of the guests' good wishes for the new couple.
Walking through the arc of swords following the ceremony was done to ensure the couple's safe passage into their new life together.
Reception Traditions
Beginning in early Roman times, the cake has been a special part of the wedding celebration. A thin loaf was broken over the bride's head at the close of the ceremony to symbolize fertility. The wheat from which it was made, symbolized fertility and the guests eagerly picked up the crumbs as good luck charms. This tradition evolved and spread to England in the Middle Ages where the guests of a wedding would bring small cakes and stack them together. During the Middle Ages, it became traditional for the couple to kiss over a small cluster of cakes. Later, a clever baker decided to amass all these small cakes together, covering them with frosting.
Toasting comes from an ancient French custom of placing bread in the bottom of the glass - a good toaster drained the drink to get the "toast." According to legend, when a bride and groom drink their wedding toast, whoever finishes first will rule the family.
In the 14th century, having a piece of the bride’s clothing was thought to bring good fortune. In order to obtain a piece of this lucky attire, some rowdy guests would grab at the wedding dress and tear off pieces of it, leaving the dress in tatters. In order to stop this practice, brides began to cover their dresses with ribbons and later pass out ribbons as favors. The favor along with bouquet and garter tosses are thought to have evolved from this as a way to pass along the good luck of the bride while keeping her clothing in tact.
The term "honeymoon" is credited with many origins. One thought is that it originated from the times when a man captured his bride. The couple would remain in hiding for a cycle of the moon after the wedding and drink honey wine.
more links found at - dress of period

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