Why did the Great Fire of 1666 burn down so many more houses than other fires in London at that time?

In this exceptional lesson, pupils adopt the role of providers of a new plaque for a monument explaining why the Great Fire of 1666 burnt down so many more houses than other fires at the time. Their understanding is built up systematically through pictures and then text enabling pupils to list, classify and then prioritise their ideas, each in a motivating way that maximises thinking and minimises writing whilst still ending up with a high quality written product.

Learning objectives

  • Pupils are able to make deductions from visual clues;
  • they can give at least 3 valid reasons why The Fire spread so quickly;
  • some are able to group their ideas under headings eg the weather or materials;
  • the most able can prioritize the reasons explaining the reasons that were really critical on this particular day eg the wind direction and the preceding hot dry summer

Step 1

With slide 2 displayed on the screen, set the puzzle. When there must have been so many fires in London in the 17th century, why then was this a massive fire, burning

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