The Duchess Bakes a Cake (and a Medieval Times Unity Study)

What a fun time studying The Duchess Bakes a Cake!  I would say we really did far more with regards to Medieval Times than we actually did from the Five in a Row book.  Having said that, the kids LOVED this book by Virginia Kahl.  It was one of the FIAR books they requested over and over.  It is written in poetic prose, rhyming couplets – which is part of why they loved it.  They love every book written in this way!
The study of Medieval Times was something fun I wanted to do this year as well… so, here we are!
The Lapbook and Activities at the bottom of the post were found for free at HomeschoolShare.com!
I used:


Books and Literature

The Duchess Bakes a Cake!

A great collection of books!  Usborne books include, First Encyclopedia of History, Usborne Book of World History (Sonlight, Core B), Look Inside a Castle, Living Long Ago (Core A), Knights, Stories of Knights, See Inside Castles, Time Traveler Knights and Castles (comes with Core B).  Yes.  We love Usborne books.  Just a little bit.  *smile*

More Usborne – sticker books and art books for Medieval Times.

Have you ever seen the “Look Inside” series from Usborne?  It’s amazing!  Here are some pages from Look Inside a Castle.  What a great living book!

Making a Medieval Castle and Village

We had so much fun making our Medieval Castles and Villages!  From the Kights and Castles Things to Make and Do book, we made really neat castles out of heavy cardstock/board and set up an entire Medieval Village.

Large pieces of Bristol Board – one big rectangle and two small rectangles that will fit around toilet paper rolls.  We printed the bricks using a white eraser as a stamp and grey/black paint.


We created the castle walls easily with folded long rectangular piece of Bristol Board.  We cut the tops to look like the edged castles.

Top Left: A Playmobil castle set we have, Top Right: A top view of our Medieval Villages, Bottom: Audrey sets up her village with various people and animals based on what she remembers from our stories and studies.

Let the battle begin!

A look inside Simon’s castle – complete with working draw bridge!


Our “working” well for Audrey’s village.


Art and Color

Complimentary Colors:

This is an activity from Five in a Row.  Because The Duchess is illustrated in green and red (complimentary colors), we studied how complimentary colors work and the color wheel.


Drawing Knights and Battle Scenes:


I absolutely adore Alex’s Knights… 

Language Arts

Characters – how do characters make up a story?  Who are the characters in The Duchess?

Discussing vocabulary along with the elements of a story and plot.

Medieval Games – Chess!

Our boys love Chess.  What a perfect excuse to play a few rounds!

Food and Cake (or… Cinnamon Rolls!)

As part of our study of The Duchess, we baked Cinnamon Rolls to practice measuring dry and wet ingredients and also, to watch how yeast works to make the dough rise.  It was fun and DELICIOUS!

Also – eating PORRIDGE!  😉


Why did Knights fight?


LINKS you might like:



Duchess Bakes a Cake Coloring Sheet 1

Armor of God

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