Workable Peace: Ancient Greece and the Peloponnesian War

PON Books
December 2007

Workable Peace is an innovative high school humanities curriculum and professional development project for secondary school classrooms.  Using new teaching materials and strategies, Workable Peace integrates the study of intergroup conflict and the development of critical thinking, problem-solving, and perspective-taking skills into social studies and humanities content.  It gives teachers academically rigorous tools for teaching the major themes and key events of history in ways that enliven the imagination, awaken moral reasoning, and impart social and civic skills that students can use throughout their lives.

Ancient Greece and the Peloponnesian War examines the historical conflict among the Greek city-states before, during, and after the Peloponnesian war.  Students explore the relationships between Athens, Spart, and their allies- a relationship that culminated in the war.  Drawing from the Melian Dialogues of Thucydides, the Athens-Melos Role Play simulates the historical negotiations between the city-states of Athens and Melos during the 7-year interlude of peace in the middle of the Peloponnesian war, when an Athenian fleet arrived to demand that Melos- which was independent but culturally connected to Sparta- join the Delian League, a coalition of Greek city-states led by Athens.