The past couple of weeks, our family studied the Reformation. We had already spent a lot of time talking about the Popes (who were patrons of many of the famous Renaissance artists like Michelangelo and Raphael. (See more at this Renaissance post). And, we had already talked a little bit about the sale of indulgences (because Pope Leo X in particular was known for granting indulgences to help raise money for the reconstruction of St. Peter’s Basilica). Then we delved further into the life of Martin Luther and his impact on the world.
We read the sections in history book on Martin Luther and the Reformation. We’re using The Story of the Renaissance (affiliate link) as our spine for this unit. I also made a notebook page for the kids and they filled that out and added it to their history notebook.
We spent quite a bit of time talking about the role of not only Martin Luther, but also Pope Julius II & Pope Leo X (who became the Pope in 1515, two years before the 95 Theses) and Johann Tetzel (who came to Wittenberg to sell indulgences). We also talked about the 95 Theses. Contrary to popular belief, they were not nailed to the door of All Saints’ Church in Wittenberg, Luther passed around pages. That’s pretty interesting, right?
These Reformation notebook pages are currently free. They will be bundled with the Renaissance worksheets (so be sure to grab those now too!).
The kids filled out the first page. We went over the other information in this packet, read the section from The Story of the Renaissance (affiliate link), which we are using as our spine for this unit. The kids cut out the lapbook pieces, took notes, and glued them onto a blank page to add to their history notebook.
We watched the movie, Luther (affiliate link). It is a PG-13 film starring the actor Joseph Fiennes. It touches on most of the historical material we are covering for this part of our unit (Johann Tetzel’s sale of indulgences). There was a sub-story about a crippled little girl that was compelling (for my kids). They really loved the movie (and begged to continue watching each day!).
Another option is the PBS documentary Empires – Martin Luther (affiliate link). We didn’t watch this, but we *did* watch the Empires episodes on the Medici Family (affiliate link), which was really terrific. Again, as with any historical dramas/movies, I recommend you preview these to see if they are a good fit for your family. 🙂
You might be interested in our other Renaissance Post:
- Early Renaissance: The Medici Family and Renaissance Art Notebook Pages
- Renaissance Artist Worksheets on da Vinci, Michelangelo, Raphael and their Patrons
- Renaissance Worksheets – Holy Roman Empire, Albrecht Dürer
And you might want to visit the posts from our Middle Ages Unit (Some of these posts also include some free notebook pages):
- Vikings, Norse Myths and a Woodburning Craft
- Middle Ages: King Arthur, Charlemagne
- Middle Ages Unit: The Medieval Church and Monasteries Worksheets
- Feudalism in the Middle Ages Notebook Pages and Simulation
- Middle Ages Projects and Books
- Middle Ages – Notebook Pages on England and France (800-1200)
- The Crusades
- Middle Ages in the 1300s: Black Plague Simulation, Hundred Years’ War, Crusades
- Genghis Khan and Kublai Khan Free Notebook Pages
- Marco Polo – Notebook Pages, Books and Resources
Disclosure: Please note that some of the links in this post are affiliate links, and at no additional cost to you, I will earn a commission if you decide to make a purchase.