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University Library, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Children's Fire Literacy

Example Discussion Questions for Historic Fires and Firefighting

  • What did you notice about the firefighters' equipment? How is it different from firefighters today?
  • Why should we learn about fires of the past? Why is it important?
  • How do you think famous fires of the past affected those who survived them? What changed after the fires?
  • What do you know about historic firefighting? How is modern firefighting different from firefighting of the past?
  • When large fires or other dangerous events happen, what do you think changes afterward? How do people affected by disasters rebuild differently?
  • There were many different theories about what caused the Great Chicago Fire. What do you think is the truth? Why do you think there are so many different stories?
  • Do you know about any other historic fires? What are they? What do you know about them?