2 SMART TASKS AND Using de Bono’s Thinking Hats approach to deepen children’s understanding of the Great Fire. A fascinating short article in which 2 talented infant teachers explain how they successfully used de Bono’s Thinking Hats approach to both deepen pupils’ understanding of the Great Fire and to encourage pupils to think about the impact on individual lives caught up in the momentous event.
Lessons and Activities
- Why did the Great Fire burn down so many houses? A history mystery using a post-it challenge.
- How shall we rebuild London after the Great Fire? A creative problem-solving activity.
- What happened during the Great Fire and how do we know? Evidence-based activity which uses a kinaesthetic approach.
- What’s in the bag and who does it belong to? An object-based problem-solving approach to learning about life during the Great Fire
- What’s going on in our mystery picture? This simple starter activity uses a large, coloured, artist’s reconstruction of Pepys burying his possessions when he knows it is time to finally flee his home
- Help Tom and Jane fight the Great Fire. But how? A superb interactive new web-based program produced by the Museum of London, National Archives, and others.The site referred to in Help Tom and Jane fight the Great Fire can be used highly effectively to support the lesson on: ‘What happened during the Great Fire and How do we know?’ The structure of the simulation in the form of a game, intersperses narrative action with pupil activity and reflection on the question “How do we know?” The quality of the support material is exceptional; so many sources brought together in one place. You’ll hardly need to go much further! Here is the link
- Using De Bono’s Thinking Hats to develop thinking skills at Key Stage 1 via the topic the Great Fire of London
Teaching The Great Fire to Key Stage 1
Despite being around for a very long time as an infant topic it still ‘does the business’. Not only does it offer one of the best contexts for looking at cause and consequence, it also encourages the use of drama and role play to develop an empathetic understanding of the human dilemmas of the thousands having to watch their houses going up in flames. Schools are now being more imaginative with their approaches, many bringing in the local Fire Brigade to put out the fire in the playground where previously junk-modelled buildings (made as part of D&T) went up in flames! Don’t try this at home !!
The lessons here develop a deep understanding of causation, so that children’s explanations are better than some found in books. They also exploit pupils’ creativity, asking them to be designers of the new rebuilt London