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A Literary Curriculum Planning Sequence for The Great Fire of London

Subscribers Only

KS: R & KS1, R & KS1 / LKS2

Year Group: Year 2

Author(s): Emma Adams & James Weston Lewis

Main Outcomes:

Non- fiction text incorporating different text-types, including a guide to London buildings (non-chronological report), a poster and a diary entry in role.

Overview and Outcomes:

This is a two-week sequence for The Great Fire of London by Emma Adams and James Weston Lewis, in which the children explore London in the present and the past, through the story of the great fire of London. Children compare the London of today and the London of 1666, using past and present tense. They explore the cause of the fire of London through interviewing the baker, Michael Fanniner, planning and recording appropriate questions, and design safety posters using imperative verbs to write commands. They then write diary entries from the point of view of the cat that Samuel Pepys saw being rescued from the ashes, drawing on the skills and knowledge they have practiced during the unit.

Synopsis of Text:

In 1666, London's citizens woke to see the skyline above their city's cramped wooden houses ablaze. The Great Fire of London is a hauntingly beautiful visual re-telling of one of the most well-known disasters in the city's history. To commemorate the 350th anniversary of the fire, powerful and sumptuous drawings from the new east London illustrator, James Weston Lewis, bring the events of November 1666 to life in this stunning gift book.

Lewis's drawings take readers on a journey, from the single smouldering coal that falls out of the baker's oven to the swirling clouds of ash that engulf the city and then in to the very heart of the fire itself. As the pages turn, you can witness London burning to the ground and then rebuilding again.

Children will love examining the rich detail of each spread, from the detailed city map to the drawings of London before, during and after the fire took hold. This book takes the dramatic historical information surrounding the Great Fire of London and transforms it into a breathtaking story that will transfix readers of all ages.

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