As historic (and fanciful) as castles are, modern children today usually know something about them. Either from the building perspective, with towers and turrets, bridges and moats, to the royalty that lived inside and ruled. Many fairy tales and stories occur in or near a castle and the word usually conjures bigger than life images of mystery, wealth, grandeur, and power. Plan a trip to Europe or Asia and you will most likely want to visit a castle.
For the architectural perspective, David McCauley has authored several wonderful books, such as Built to Last and Castles. Were castles as grand as they seem? Were they areas of great comfort for the wealthy families they housed? What kinds of events were commonly held at castles? Balls? Feasts?
Jousting? Knights? Did castles have bathrooms? Were moats for swimming or did they have alligators or crocodiles? Did people dress up all the time? They didn’t have televisions, so what did they do all day?
Read Wonder 931: Where’ Is the Biggest Castle in the World? and see what questions you and your child might want to explore.