Hands-On Canadian History: Vikings in Canada

The arrival of Vikings in Canada was sometime around the year 1000A.D. Original evidence was only through the Icelandic sagas recording the adventures of discovering places that they called Vinland, Markland, and Helluland. New evidence of Vikings in Canada was discovered in the 1960s when archaeologists excavated L’Anse Aux Meadows in Newfoundland and uncovered many Norse artifacts and other evidence of their stay here.

Hands-On Canadian History: Vikings in Canada

Artifacts help people study the past – learn more about different cultures lived and acted. They are like secret clues to unlock from history. Here are some of the things they found in the L’Anse Aux Meadows dig.

Vikings in this time period had very intricate metalwork on their brooches and pins. Check out these replica designs of Viking brooches. The details of the designs are so interwoven and beautiful.

Make a Viking Brooch

Since Vikings needed pins and brooches to keep their cloaks closed and other clothes attached, they were common. Make one for yourself.

Materials you will need:

  • Cardstock paper
  • Scissors
  • Pencil
  • White glue
  • Gold acrylic paint
  • Duct tape
  • Safety pin

To make a personalized brooch, follow the steps from Instructables for DIY Embossed Pendant with a few adaptations – like ignoring the information about the jump ring and adding a pin on the back instead. Using one of the examples of replicas in the link above, pick a style that works for you. I picked a trefoil design.

Some keys that I discovered while doing this project are:

  • If you use a glue stick as opposed to white glue when making the layers, it dries quickly
  • Keep a simple design when doing the glue patterns
  • Draw your design lightly onto your cutout so it’s easier to add the glue
  • Allow plenty of time for the glue to dry before painting it
  • Use Gold paint…. not gold glitter paint…..
  • Attach a safety pin with a strong duct tape (or just use duct tape to give it the appearance of a pin if you are having trouble keeping it attached)
  • If you don’t have a cloak around, throw a blanket over your shoulders and pin it closed. Instant cloak!

See all 31 Days of Hands-on Canadian History.

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