Book Review: Build! A Knight's Castle
Meet the team - Oscar (9), Harry (10) and Primrose (6). Their mission? To help me review the new papercraft book, 'Build! A Knight's Castle', written by Archaeologist Annalie Seaman, published by Ivy Kids and retailing for £12.99
First to get his mitts on the book, Harry had a good flick through before his friends arrived. He was pleased to find a table of contents and a glossary to help him find his way round the book and understand some of the unfamiliar words and terms, such as crenellations, radiocarbon dating and geophysical survey.
When Oscar and Primrose arrived, the three of them unsurprisingly wanted to go straight to the back and get on with building the castle, but I insisted we have a look at the information first. The book is well laid out and organised and kids will get more out of it if they read the text first. The first two sections will give them an understanding of how the castle should be laid out and what the various parts are for.
In a nutshell, the three sections are:
1.All about Archaeology & Medieval life.
2.The parts of a Castle
3.Instructions and parts for building your own Castle.
Boys being boys, we seemed to spend a lot of time learning about Sieges! It was Horrible Histories all over as we discussed the table of Attackers Battle Tactics and how each tactic could be counteracted by the Defenders’. But to be fair, we were all equally fascinated and found plenty of stuff we didn’t already know. It was frustrating at times that the glossary didn’t have more words in it.
I’m pleased to report that once I let them loose, the various components were easy to pop out, while being sturdy enough to withstand three excited kids pulling and popping simultaneously. However once construction begins, a much more delicate approach is needed.
Building the castle does require good fine motor skills and probably an adult to help, depending on the age of your children. There are some parts that are extremely fiddly like the garderobe and portcullis (both in the glossary I’m pleased to say) so a good dose of patience and perseverance is needed. It was definitely a team effort and will need to be done in chunks. I wasn’t surprised to find the boys slinking off to play lego after a while, leaving Primrose and I to happily carry on. The picture on the right shows what we achieved in a couple of hours, which included reading all the information first. We probably have another couple of hours work left before we can start playing knights and damsels or sieges and battles.
This book would make a great Christmas present. It’s aimed at children from 7 years up, and certainly the older boys did seem to get more out of it, but Primrose and I enjoyed it too. Perfect for a post-Christmas dinner or Boxing Day family activity.
Local Mum of 2 (& Godmother of 1). Editor of Raring2go! Salisbury since 2009.
Mysteries in time Ancient Egyptian Adventure review
Our young reviewer checks out the new offering from Mysteries in Time
Review of Race to Infinity
Have a read of what our young reviewer and her family thought of this new maths game...
TY Friends Review
One of our young Raring2go! reviewers has tested out some toys from TY Friends-see what she thought...
Revell Level 1 Build & Play 2015 Ford Mustang GT Review
Our young Raring2go! reviewer had the chance test the Revell Level 1 Build & Play 2015 Ford Mustang GT, here is what Billy thought...
hosting a Haunted House Party
Raise money for the British Heart Foundation whilst having a fang-tastic time! Entertain your guest by playing ghostly games and dancing to mysterious music. Why not wow your guests with these healthy and tasty spooky snacks? If you would like to do some freaky face paints then watch these step by step video tutorials. Fri 27th-31st Oct
Halloween is the perfect time of year to get creative in the kitchen and making food scarily fun! Whether you want to jazz up a slice of cheese on toast or go full out for a party with spooky drinks and disgusting nibbles we have some great Halloween recipes for you right here. The kids will love getting involved - or have a surprise goulish meal!!