ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

High School Teacher Resources: Host Your Own Renaissance Fair - with Photos

Updated on November 6, 2011

Hosting a Renaissance Fair - teacher resources

Searching for teacher resources and renaissance fair ideas? If you're looking for a great way for school clubs to raise money, for students to experience hands-on learning, and for everyone to have a blast, to boot, consider hosting your own high school Renaissance fair and/or medieval fair. This is a wonderful project that numerous classes and teachers in different disciplines can work on together. I had the idea of a Renaissance fair for years before I finally made the effort to actually bring it to life. The first one was such a success that I continued organizing a Renaissance fair on our campus every year, until I retired. In case you're interested, I'll share my ideas.

First, of course, I had to clear it with the principal. Next, I enlisted the help of other teachers and various clubs, asking them to commit to having a booth at the fair. They signed up for all kinds of things! One club cooked and sold roasted wild boar and venison, another translated students' names into runes, one sold candles, one sold baked goods, one sold jewelry, and one sold bath salts in little "antique" bottles. We had booths that told fortunes, offered information about knights and jousting, and gave weaving and stained glass demonstrations.

I also received a lot of participation from the student body. I found two males who made chain mail as a hobby, so they gave demonstrations. Students with horses became knights and put on a competition. Other students with goats and sheep brought them to the fair. I even found a local college professor who brought his collection of medieval weapons, which was a huge hit.

A few members of the school band played drums, bugles, trumpets, and flutes, and the chorus supplied a group of madrigal singers. Two student magicians gave performances, as did a couple of guitarists. Members of the school's drama club presented an act from Macbeth, and four of our "class clowns" became jesters. Gymnasts served as acrobats. I was able to enlist the assistance of a local fireman, who played the bagpipes at the event, as well.

We also set up an archery contest and a caber toss. The winners earned coupons for free food that was being sold at the festival. One club sold "mead" (apple cider with whipped cream on top) at "Grendel's Mead Hall."

Each group having a booth was responsible for supplying their own tent and decorating it with pennants. All the workers had to be in period costume, too.

My principal donated money for costumes and supplies, and I also got donations from local businesses. I searched Ebay for used costumes, and we made many simple ones - tunics with tights underneath. For the horses, we got velvet from Walmart and adorned it with glitter paint and acrylic jewels (see photos). Kilts are extremely simple to make from plaid material and a couple of safety pins. Also, since the fair was just a few weeks after Halloween, we were able to pick up several medieval costumes and Renaissance costumes at a huge disount.

Lesson plans

We made the fair educational as well as fun. For example, when students bought roasted pork, they learned about how the peasants depended on pigs for survival. When they bought baked goods, they learned about wheat farming and milling practices of the period.

Many of our teachers created lesson plans that centered on our Renaissance festival. for example, home ec classes created foods, the ag classes researched livestock and farming practices of the Middle Ages, and the marketing classes sold goods. Of course, the fair went hand-in-hand with lesson plans for the history classes.

As another way to raise funds for the event, students bought chances to become king and queen of the fair. The winners wore elaborate costumes and got to feast all day for free.

Many of the students and teachers really got into the spirit of the fair and arrived in costume. The event was held on a school day just before the Thanksgiving holiday. Teachers could choose to spend the entire day at the fair, part of the day, or to not participate at all, but we didn't have a single teacher who didn't want to take part in some way.

I contacted local media before the event, so it was covered on television and in local magazines and newspapers. The school got a lot of positive press coverage, along with wonderful PR with the community. Many graduating seniors stated that our Medieval-Renaissance Fair was their best memory from their high school years!

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • profile image

      emma 

      6 years ago

      I am a high school student and am in a club which hosts one every year at our school. The students really got involved this year with a dunk tank and "the pickle challenge." where if they stuff the whole pickle in their mouth it is free. There are some great ideas you guys incorporated I will be sure to bring up next year.

    • prairieprincess profile image

      Sharilee Swaity 

      6 years ago from Canada

      This is an awesome idea! Talk about engagement. Thanks for sharing.

    • habee profile imageAUTHOR

      Holle Abee 

      7 years ago from Georgia

      MC, my Renaissance fair was a huge hit with students!

    • MedievalCostumes profile image

      MedievalCostumes 

      7 years ago from San Diego, CA

      What a great idea! Definitely a fun family event for any school to organize!

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)