“The War To End War”: How To Think and Teach About The First World War

February 23-February 23, 2021

4:15 pm-5:45 pm

Remote Workshop On Zoom


A Free Workshop with Teachers As Scholars

The First World War marked the end of an era of globalization, and of the British hegemony that facilitated it. In the long 19th century, deals were made in London and enforced by the British navy. Changes in the balance of power and in technology, along with plenty of miscalculation, led to a catastrophic war that both devastated and modernized Europe, shifted power across the Atlantic, and left widespread disillusionment in its wake.

After 1945, globalization found a new underwriter. The American century replaced the British one.

The First World War is a case study in transition between world orders, and an opportunity to explore the lessons of history in our classes. This workshop demonstrates the use of the Four Question Method (4QM), a technique for framing inquiry in Social Studies classes. 4QM history lessons are organized around four questions that are at the heart of our discipline. The Four Question Method helps teachers and students to go beyond the basics, and think clearly about what they learn. We’ll explain the Four Questions briefly, then apply them to the story of the First World War. You’ll leave with a better understanding of the war, what the major participants were thinking, and why events played out in the ways they did. You’ll also have a framework for turning this important piece of world history into a practicum in judgment for your students: how do we avoid another 1914?


These questions are MUCH better than the ones I've been using.

2021 Workshop Participant

Fantastic inquiry method, engaging program.

2017 Workshop Participant