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Conflict and wars have always been a part of human history. Likewise, mankind has always tried to resolve existing conflict and avoid future ones by coming to a resolution or mutual understanding. The WebQuest in this article can be used to introduce your students to significant treaties from the past and the conflict resolution methods used to create them.
Possible treaties and resources are suggested. However, you may want to limit the WebQuest to one specific treaty or a certain time-frame. The Avalon Project run by Yale Law School is an excellent resource for primary documents if the treaty or time period you wish to have your students research is not listed in this article. Or Documents.gov is another great website for teaching tools on treaties. Both links are provided below.
Conflict resolution has often taken the form of a treaty and was usually the result of one side defeating the other in armed conflict. While this is true, many conflicts and disputes never heat up to actual battle, but still remain a stress and threat to peace. Treaties and agreements are often created to reconcile these differences as well. Arms Control Agreements are an example of the latter and links to resources dealing with such treaties are included below.
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Conflict Resolution WebQuest
Conflict Resolution and Treaties:
1. Assign students a treaty to research. This WebQuest can be an individual or group assignment.
Treaties and Agreements throughout History-
- Treaty of Paris 1783
- Treaty of Ghent 1814
- Treaty of Versailles 1919
- SORT (Strategic Offensive Reductions Treaty) 2002
- Your assignment is to analyze your assigned treaty or agreement and determine how it would have been different if you were involved in its design. You must make three changes and clearly explain why you made them. The changes can take the form of additions, omissions, or alterations. They can be as simple as to the location of the signing as long as you explain your reason and support it with facts.
- The following questions need to be answered and turned in with your assignment.
(Answering these questions can be the entire Conflict Resolution WebQuest if the assignment above is too time consuming.)
Click for a handout of the assignments in this Conflict Resolution WebQuest. Task, process, and evaluation details are included.
- Was this treaty or agreement in response to a potential threat or an armed conflict?
- Describe the threat, war, or conflict. (When did it begin? Which nations, groups, or individuals were involved? Was the conflict based on territorial disputes, aggression by one party, or ideological differences? (Ideological differences can be over religion, form of government, economical problems, nuclear weapons and the like.)
- What were the main grievances, disagreements, or conflicts addressed by the document?
- Which countries or individuals were responsible for the treaty’s content?
- List what you consider to be its main failings. Why were these aspects of the document unsuccessful?
- List what you consider to be its main successes. What made these elements work?
- Describe the process used to reach this resolution.
- Did the elements of this treaty contribute to any succeeding conflicts?
These Internet sites have information on other conflicts and treaties that can be used with this Webquest format.
Treaty of Paris 1783
Treaty of Versailles 1919
SORT (Strategic Offensive Reductions Treaty) 2002
- Image Credit, http://www.ourdocuments.gov/doc_large_image.php?flash=true&doc=20;
- Image Credit, http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:PreliminaryTreatyOfParisPainting.jpg