Rosslyn Chapel Educational Content Now Available

by Katia Chaterji
August 28, 2014
With the new school year just around the corner, CyArk is excited to announce the release of new lesson plans and online activities for teachers and students, bringing the mysteries of the past to the classroom via CyArk’s newly released Rosslyn Chapel project. A mid-15th century Gothic chapel, Rosslyn Chapel is covered in extensive carvings throughout the interior and exterior, which have figured this wonderful chapel into numerous legends over time, including that of the Holy Grail. Now, with the help of three free lesson plans and an interactive quiz, students can analyze the construction techniques behind Gothic structures, study symbolism through carvings, and experiment with the laws of physics in building stable and secured archways.

These lesson plans were created under the expert guidance of Fiona Rogan, Learning and Outreach Manager at the Rosslyn Chapel Trust. Together, CyArk and the Rosslyn Chapel Trust developed three diverse lesson plans based on the 3D interactive content created by Historic Scotland and the Digital Design Studio at the Glasgow School of Art. Many thanks to these partners for making the Rosslyn Chapel digital documentation and education development possible!

CyArk would also like to thank Robert Anderson of Beeslack Community High School and Scott McGibbon of City of Glasgow College for contributing their knowledge of technology, design, and stone construction to our lesson plans. Their superior feedback strengthens these lessons and enables wider accessibility for both lower and upper level students.

The new lesson plans cover a wide range of topics. In “Talking Gothic,” students learn to identify key elements of Gothic architecture, and to recognize these elements at Rosslyn Chapel and other Gothic age structures. In “Engineering Rosslyn Chapel,” students learn about basic concepts of mechanical and gravitational forces, load bearing, and arch construction as they study architectural arches and supports in their hometowns and attempt to create one themselves. In “Master’s Apprentice,” students learn the basics of architectural drawings as they reproduce features and symbols from Rosslyn Chapel itself. Finally, students test their knowledge of Rosslyn Chapel’s rich history and Gothic architecture through an online quiz, rewarded by a special message from Lady Helen St. Clair-Erskine, Countess of Rosslyn—if completed correctly!

CyArk wishes to thank the Rosslyn Chapel Trust, Historic Scotland, and the Digital Design Studio for making this project a success! We’d love to hear your feedback on how these lessons are received by students. For comments or questions, please contact us at
Photograph of the entrance to Rosslyn Chapel in Roslin, Scotland
Cross-section of Rosslyn Chapel, created by CDDV from 3D laser scan data
Lady Helen, the Countess of Rosslyn, with a message for those who complete the online quiz
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Rosslyn Chapel