Last month saw the opening of the Museum of London’s latest exhibition – Fire! Fire!. We take a look at what school packages are running alongside the new exhibition, which commemorates the 350th anniversary of the Great Fire of London.
Fire! Fire! opened on the 23rd July and is designed to give pupils an insight into what London was like before, during and after the blaze that spread through the capital in 1666.
Schools visiting the exhibition can learn how the fire started, how it was spread and how it was finally beaten, and children can hear about the personal tales of people who experienced it.
They can also get hands-on with 17th century firefighting techniques and learn how London rose from the ashes.
Fire! Fire! workshops for schools
For Key Stage 1, there are three facilitated sessions that schools can book onto.
One is London’s Burning! – a hands on workshop that allows children to handle original objects from 1666 and join in a dynamic role-play enactment of key moments from the Great Fire. The storyline is based on eyewitness accounts and covers the fire as well as its aftermath.
This workshop will see pupils developing speaking and listening skills and gaining an emotional understanding of the fire.
The 60 minute session is followed by a 60 minute self-guided tour of the exhibition and curriculum links include Key Stage 1: significant events (Fire of London).
A second Key Stage 1 workshop is entitled Great Fire Puppets. Linking to Drama and Art, the workshop uses interactive storytelling and period music to bring the story of Samuel Pepys, King Charles and Sir Christopher Wren to life.
After the show children will get the opportunity to make their own shadow puppets.
The third workshop available to Key Stage 1 groups is called 350 Years Ago and is a story-telling session that uses evidence to bring the stories of historical people, including various women and children involved in the Great Fire, to life.
Key Stage 3 pupils, meanwhile, can book onto a The Great Fire and Its Legacy workshop, which investigates the aftermath of the fire and how this influenced London’s economy and culture.
Children will explore life in London both before and after the fire and will investigate primary sources, combining evidence from contemporary diarists and handling real objects from the time.
Curriculum links include Key Stage 3 History and Key Stage 3 English.
Schools can also combine their exhibition visit with a guided tour of St Paul’s Cathedral, which will include the chance to see memorials for those that survived the Great Fire.
Pupils will also have the chance to compare models of old St Paul’s with the current cathedral, and join in storytelling covering the key facts about the fire.
Teachers can call 020 7001 9844 or complete an online form to book a session and the website also features useful resources that can be studied before or after a visit.
For more information visit www.museumoflondon.org.uk/fire.