Guy Fawkes and the Gunpowder Plot: Resources

In late October and early November, many teachers will be planning lessons on Guy Fawkes and the Gunpowder Plot, so we’ve updated this post containing some useful downloadable teaching resources on the topic.

Centered on the Gunpowder Plot of 1605, this collection of lesson ideas and activities will help you to teach the story of Guy Fawkes.

Gunpowder Plot Lesson Planning

The pack includes content aimed at students in Foundation Stage, Key Stage 1, Key Stage 2 and Key Stage 3. Hopefully, this means you’ll find something to adapt or use, whatever age group you teach.

Activity 1: Presentation

This presentation is a great way to introduce the Gunpowder Plot as a topic. It tells a simple version of the story alongside pictures and images. This could be used at story time, to grab the interest of young learners. Alternatively, try using it to start a lesson. The presentation could be stopped halfway through and students challenged to find out the end or, pupils could be asked to find out about one of the plotters other than Guy Fawkes when it’s finished.

Activity 2: Word search

Word searches make great starter activities or extension tasks. The word search itself might not take too long to finish, especially for older children but, it’s a great way to encourage independent learning. Once they’ve finished the task, get children to use non fiction books, the Internet or resources around the class, to find out more about the names and words they’ve seen. Gunpowder Plot Wordsearch.

Activity 3: Sequencing

This sequencing activity is useful for assessing whether children have remembered the events of the Gunpowder plot. It could be completed as an individual activity or in groups. For younger children it’s probably best to revisit the idea of stories having a beginning, middle and end before starting. You may also want to model how to do the work before letting students have a go. If your doing the sequencing in groups it’s a good idea to blow the images up to A3 and assign children different jobs, such as cutting, ordering and sticking. Gunpowder Plot Sequencing Activity

Activity 4: Mounteagle Letter Study

A good idea for a whole class writing activity. Show children the letter either on the whiteboard or as a handout. Get children to discuss the letter. You could ask them questions such as

* Who do you think wrote the letter?
* Can we trust a source when we don’t know the author was?
* How can you tell it’s old?
* Can you read the writing?
* What differences can you spot between a letter now and then?

Afterwards, hand out the letter and text. You could then ask children to write a letter warning one of their friends from danger. Other options include, asking students to rewrite the letter so everyone can understand it or adding the features we would expect from a letter, such as address, sender and recipient. Downloadable resource: Mounteagle Letter Study

Activity 5

Use the subject of the Gunpowder plot to create a wanted poster for one of the conspirators. When completed children could be asked to add a description of the wanted man and his crimes. Posters could be illustrated in any medium although sketching pencils could make them look authentic. Try staining them with tea afterwards to give them an ‘old feel’. We’ve provided a template and some examples of artwork: Gunpowder Plot Wanted Poster


This post is updated from the original Gunpowder Plot Teaching Resources post written by former primary school teacher, Matt Price. We hope you find it useful.
Find websites with more great free teaching resources organised by subject and key stage.

Author: Pano Savvidis