Medieval Marriage (Key Stage 3)

Classroom role-playing activity

This resource was written by Dr Mike Tyler, Curator of the Yorkshire Museum of Farming and a member of the education team at the Danelaw Centre for Living History. This is a lively classroom role-playing activity based on real-life events and characters from the 1390s, which is aimed for use at Key Stage 3 but can be used at all levels to enrich understanding of the period. 

This activity is designed to help pupils learn that the history of the Middle Ages is not just about politics, warfare, kings and queens but is just as much concerned with the daily lives of all people from rich to poor. In practical terms it teaches pupils about the daily lives of typical working people, how they lived and the kind of work that they did. It shows how young people met and socialised and how partnerships were formed. It also sheds light on how disputes were resolved, and the role of the church in people’s lives.  

The resource offers considerable scope for thinking about and discussing issues to do with sources and interpretation, the structure of society and whether we underestimate the complexity of life and thinking in the later Middle Ages.

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