Site hosted by Build your free website today!
 | Child's Play Home | Preschool Themes | "Castle" Unit

"Castle" Unit
(Or Medieval, Knights, Dragons, Royalty)
This unit could also be adapted to a Harry Potter Theme 
by placing a little more emphasis on magic and add some things about Owls.

This unit was created by Nancy's House Family Childcare
Reprinted with permission ~ Thanks, Nancy! 
Note:  Some of the links on this page will take you to Nancy's site for patterns - these pages will open in a new window for easier navigation.  Simply close the window to return here.


Have these on hand in your Dramatic Play area.  You can also make these with the children.

Damsel Hats
Cut a large circle from paper, cut once into the center point, roll and staple to form a cone to fit the child's head use strips of crepe paper, long pieces of colorful curling ribbon and tulle (soft netting) hanging from the top to decorate. The children also can add color paint/marker), jewels and glitter.  Attach elastic to hold them on (but that's really not needed.)

Knight’s Helmets
Cut out the portion of a gallon milk jug below the handle and the bottom of the carton. Decorate with gray tempera/soap mixture, and finish off with a feather. String might be needed to assist in keeping the helmet on. 
Cut the helmet shape from a one-gallon plastic milk jug. Cover it with aluminum foil. Cut a visor for the unused part of the jug. Cover the visor with foil and attach it to the helmet with brass fasteners. Cover the ends of the fasteners inside the helmet with tape.
Roll thin poster board into a can shape.  Tape edges together.  Mark where eyes and mouth slots should be, then cut them out.  Cover the helmet with foil, bending it into the slots, and taping it on the backside.

Prince Hats
Make the old tried and true newspaper folded hat make them out of plain newsprint. The children can paint them. Add a large feather to stick into the brim.

Cover a paper towel tube with foil and tape (or use duct tape or paint).  Cut a hole out of the bottom of a margarine tub, large enough to slip the tube through.  Slide the ‘sword’ in and tape it to the tub inside and out.  You can paint the margarine tub too.

Design your own family crest.  Cut out the basic shape from poster board then use marker to divide the shield in four sections.  Draw your favorite things, shapes, and colors in each section.  Cut and tape a strip of cardboard to the back to use as a handle.

You can make fancy capes with faux fur collars or using fancy fabric or just give the children large squares of fabric to tuck in their shirt collars or drape around their shoulders.

Make silver pieces out of cardboard circles covered with foil.  Or spray paint cardboard "coins" or metal juice lids gold. You could even write on them with markers.

Stick Horses
Purchase ready made stick horses or cut a horses head from poster board color and attach to a wooden dowel.

Draw wing shapes on poster board and decorate.  Cut them out but don’t cut them apart.  Staple a ribbons to the middle and use to tie them onto the children.  Bring the ribbons over the child’s shoulders and cross over the chest, then pull around the waist to the back and around to the front and tie in a bow.  Make masks from poster board with elastic strings to keep them on. 

Art Centers

Have the child write their name across the top of a banner shape cut from paper. Below their name have the children add pictures or colored stars, strips, suns, animals etc to personalize. Mount on a dowel with a string hanger. Talk about how royalty would have their own banners to proclaim who they were to others.  When you saw a banner, be it on a castle or maybe on a coach when royalty traveled, you would know who it belonged to. Compare this idea to flags of different countries.

On one long edge of a cardboard strip (3" x 20") cut a zigzag edge to make points like a crown. Measure the strip around the child’s head, allowing enough room for it to overlap slightly. Cut off any extra cardboard. Lay the strip flat and let the child decorate his/her crown with the jewels, beads, and glitter that are available. When the glue has dried, staple the ends of the cardboard together to form a crown.

Provide sting, yarn or even chenille stems and dyed noodle, cut straws, beads, etc. 

Magic Wands
Children can make wands by taping pieces of ribbon to an unsharpened pencil or small wooden dowel.  Or provide poster board star shapes to decorate and attach to the dowels.

Provide ‘parchment’ paper to write on.  Roll it up and tie with a ribbon.


Sword in the Stone
Cut an egg cup from the bottom of a cardboard egg carton for each. Turn it bottom side and cut a small slit in the center. To make a sword, cover one ice cream stick with aluminum foil. With scissors, cut the ends off another ice-cream stick and color it with markers. Glue the two sticks together.

Frog Prince (pattern)
Color the frog and crown and cut out.  Glue the crown to the frog’s head.  Fold the frog along the dotted lines.

Dragon Puppet 1 (pattern)
Color and cut out pattern.  Place the bag on a table with the bottom flap at the top facing you.  Glue the dragon’s head to the flap.  Glue the body to the body of the bag.

Dragon Puppet 2 (pattern)
Similar to above.  There are eyes that stick up above the top of the flag, nostrals that go at the bottom of the flap, mouth and fangs which go at the flap edge.  The tongue goes under the flap.  The tail goes on the back of the bag.  Add scales with markers or glue and glitter. 

My Little Kingdom Picture (pattern)
Color and cut out pattern along the heavy black lines.  Fold the knight and princess along the dotted line to make them stand up.  Fold the castle along the dotted lines and glue the end flaps together.  Encourage the children to talk about who lives in their castle – what do they do all day?

3D Kings Castle
Pattern 1
Pattern 2
Pattern 3
Color and cut out patterns.  Cut the mounting slots on the 2 smaller castles pieces.  Cut the T pattern on the larger piece to make the doors.  Roll the large piece into a cylinder and tape the edges together.  Repeat for smaller pieces.  Glue the flag pieces together around a straw to create flag and pole for each tower.  Slip the smaller castle sections over the edge of the larger one at the slits.  Attach the flags using tape.

Decorate a 4 1/2 x 12 piece of paper with a dragon design.  Bend into a  circle and staple edges together.  Cut 24" strips of crepe paper streamers and staple them around one edge of the band.  Punch 3 holes in the top edge.  Tie a 12" piece of string or yarn to each hole and knot together at the top to make a hanger.


Hide the Dragon
Hide pictures of dragons or a toy dragon (Fisher-Price makes one) and have your ‘knights’ go on a dragon hunt.

Knights & Dragons
Divide your group into Dragons and Knights.  Have the dragons turn their backs and have the knights creep up on them.  Yell "Watch out for the knights!".  The dragons then turn around and try to catch the knights.  Those that are caught become dragons.  Reverse the game having the dragons sneak up on the knights and the knights try to catch them.

Treasure Hunt
Hide your ‘treasure’ all through the room.  Tell the kids that a dragon broke into the castle and stole the treasure.  Have the kids hunt for it.

Stories (Feltboard)

I have the Story Teller (pre printed felt board sets) Castle Tales set.  I am using:

The Frog Prince
Princess & The Pea
St. George and the Dragon

Rhymes etc.

Movement Poem
Here is the Prince with the feathered cap (Boys take off caps and bow) 
Here are his boots that go tap, tap. (Boys march around) 
Here is the Princess with a crown. (Girls touch crowns with both hands) 
Here is her lovely velvet gown. (Girls hold out imaginary skirt and curtsy) 
Here is the castle tall and wide. (Lift arms for tall and wide) 
Here they can play safely inside! (Wraps arms around self and hug self) 

Five Kind Kings 
5 kind kings sitting in the castle 
1 went to find the queen.  Oh, what a hassle! 
4 kind kings eating at the table. 
1 went to find his shield with its own label. 
3 kind kings sitting on their thrones, 
1 went to give the dragon some delicious bones. 
2 kind kings putting on their crowns, 
1 dropped his and it fell to the ground. 
1 kind king went to the keep, 
He climbed on his bed and fell fast asleep!

I’m A Little Dragon sung to: I’m a Little Teapot
I’m a little dragon, strong and stout.
Here is my tail and here is my snout.
If you get me upset, better watch out!
I’ll give you something to shout about!

Come To The Castle sung to: Down by the Station
Come to the castle early in the morning,
See the lords and ladies all in a row.
See the prince and princess leaving in the carriage.
People throw confetti as they go.

Come to the castle early in the evening.
See the king and queen sitting on their thrones.
See the knights in armor coming in from battle.
See the captured dragons rattling their bones.

Royal Subjects Melody sung to: The Farmer in the Dell
The lord is in the castle.
The lord is in the castle.
Heigh ho the derry oh
The lord is in the castle.

The lord takes a lady.
The lady takes a knight.
The knight takes a page.
The page takes a falconer.
The falconer takes a minstrel.

The Grand Old Duke of York
The Grand Old Duke of York
He had ten thousand men
He marched them up to the top of the hill
And he marched them down again.

And when they were up they were up
And when they were down they were down
And when they were only half way up 
They were neither up nor down.


Royal Swirls
Make a painting potion by adding glitter to clear dish detergent.  Use dish mops instead of brushes.  Paint on aluminum foil instead of paper.  When done squeegee off and start all over. If desired press a clean sheet of paper onto the glittery design and rub.

Sequins & Water
Add a handful of sparkling sequins to the water table.  Add any desired tools or props.

Glitter Dough
Add glitter or foil confetti to your favorite homemade play dough recipe, omitting the food coloring.

Group Projects

Use appliance boxes to make a big play castle. You can also use salt boxes, oatmeal or Pringles boxes and decorate to make castles

Fairy Tale
Work together to create a fairy tale.  Begin with "Once Upon A Time", choose characters, a setting and a plot.  Record the story on a long length of white butcher paper.  Then have the children illustrate it.


Jam Tarts
Flatten 2 refrigerator biscuits.  Place a spoonful of jam on one and top with the other.  Pinch the edges together and bake.

Reading Center

See Nancy's Library List

Special thanks to
for the wonderful graphics for this page!

Copyright © 1999-2003 Child's Play Family Childcare.  All rights reserved.