Lesson Plans: Grades 9-12

Lesson Seven. Treaty Negotiations

Created December 4, 2015


The Lesson


Diplomacy Challenge: Ottoman Sultan Mehmed the Conqueror

Follower of Gentile Bellini, Portrait of Mehmet II (1432–1481).

Credit: National Gallery, London. Yorck Project. Public Domain 1.0

One of the important roles of diplomats is to negotiate treaties between countries. In this lesson, students, working with their empire teams, will negotiate a treaty.

Learning Objectives

  • Students will compare and contrast the priorities of their empire in relationship to other Early Modern empires
  • Students will collaboratively negotiate a treaty using evidence to justify their proposals

Preparation and Resources

Before class, the teacher should arrange the desks into groups of three or four by empire team.

Students should bring:

Lesson Activities

Activity 1. Picking Your Lead Negotiator

Students meet with their empire teams to decide who will be the lead negotiator in each round of negotiations and review their treaty proposals and negotiation strategies. They also review other empires' draft treaty proposals on their Treating Planning Worksheet.

Activity 2. Negotiations

In a series of three rounds, students negotiate a trade treaty with another empire (or empires) using the Treaty Planning Worksheet as a template.


Each empire team submits an explanation of the treaty they signed using the following stems:

“We accepted the _____ Empire’s proposal of ______ because_________”

“We rejected the ______ Empire’s proposal of ______ because_________”

The Basics

Grade Level


Time Required

1-2 class periods

Subject Areas
  • History and Social Studies > Place > Africa
  • History and Social Studies > Themes > Common Core
  • History and Social Studies > Place > Europe
  • History and Social Studies > World > The Modern World (1500 CE-Present)
  • History and Social Studies > Place > The Middle East
  • History and Social Studies > Place > Asia
  • Critical analysis
  • Critical thinking
  • Interpretation
  • Making inferences and drawing conclusions
  • Map Skills
  • Rob Hallock, Sammamish High School (Bellevue, WA)
  • Kathryn Smoot, Sammamish High School (Bellevue, WA)


Activity Worksheets