This is a 2-day lesson designed to show students the difficulty the Allied Powers had in negotiating a treaty to end World War I. It also provides students a forum for structured debate and negotiation.
Students work in pairs during the first day (1 student representing one of the 4 countries involved and another student representing another country). They need to work together to come up with their Objectives (provisions their country would like to see in the final version of the Treaty), and they focus on 4 main areas: Responsibility for the war, Territory changes for countries involved, reparations payments, and military regulations. For it to work, a student representing the US should be paired with one representing Germany (and Britain and France being the other pair).
On day 2, each pair of students gets together with another pair (representing the other 2 countries) and they must negotiate their way to a final treaty. Students should do their best to achieve all of the goals of their country while giving up as little as possible. After students have finished, the instructor shares the provisions related to the 4 areas from the real Treaty of Versailles.
KEYWORDS: World War I; WWI; Treaty of Versailles; Simulation; Debate; Group Activity; Differentiation; 2-day lesson; Class discussion; Paris Peace Conference; Woodrow Wilson; Fourteen Points; Germany; France; Great Britain; United States