The World Peace Game devised by fourth-grade teacher Hunter has spread from a classroom in 1978 to a documentary, a TEDTalk, the Pentagon, and now finally a book, in which he describes the ways his students have solved political and ecological crises that still loom large in the world of adults. The World Peace Game presents a microcosm of the larger world: four nations, each with its own wealth, ethnic, and natural resource profile; a “religious island tribe” and a “nomadic desert clan”; a United Nations and World Bank; and a “weather god or goddess” who oversees matters of chance. To these, Hunter adds a web of interconnected crises, all of which must be solved—and all nations increased in net worth—to declare the game won. Those hoping to observe an entire game play-by-play will be disappointed; instead, Hunter provides anecdotes from a variety of sessions to illustrate his larger points, most importantly the “empty space” he wants to create for student reflections. Though Hunter has a tendency to repeat himself, some stories are moving: a boy whose slow speech and shyness finally blooms into epiphany; five students sacrifice themselves to take down a tyrant. Ultimately, Hunter’s optimism is infectious.
- World Peace and Other 4th-Grade Achievements Now Available in Korean
- An interview with John Hunter from TEMPO, the journal of the Texas Association of Gifted and Talented
- Fall, 2017 newsletter
- John Hunter Joins UVa Conference Highlighting Youth Activism and Civic Engagement
- Teaching for World Peace with John Hunter