Samuel Pepys and the Great Fire of London (KS1)

Lesson Plan


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This was originally part of a 7-week unit looking at the Great plague of London, the Great Fire of London, and Samuel Pepys as a famous person.

The children had posed their own questions about the fire; we had told the story of the fire from Samuel Pepys' perspective; the children role-played trying to put out the fire with hooks, squirters and buckets of water; and they examined pictures of said equipment and of London before and during the fire.

Here we take the investigation further, through:

  • reading genuine historical sources, pictorial and written;
  • debating causation;
  • and sequencing.

The children communicate their understandings through structured writing, individually and in groups.

Note that you need to download resources A and B. Resources B contains pictures of Pepys and the Fire. (These resources are attached to the bottom of this page)

Teaching methods
Skills to help children develop in this lesson:

  • Speaking, listening, discussion and debate - Oracy
  • Reading documents
  • Children writing
  • Learning about time
  • The visual image
  • Story-telling

See Primary teaching methods
See also Cross-curricular learning