Nuclear Tipping Point: A Teacher's Guide

One of the world’s most daunting problems is the presence of nuclear weapons in many countries of the world.

Nuclear weapons pose unequivocal threats and the call for a world without nuclear weapons provides historic opportunities for social change and global security. Scholars and analysts at the Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies (FSI) at Stanford University and at the Nuclear Threat Initiative (NTI) are addressing this very issue.

SPICE, an educational outreach program of FSI, has partnered with NTI in developing this teacher’s guide for the film, Nuclear Tipping Point. The film is a conversation with four men intimately involved in American diplomacy and national security for decades. Former Secretary of State George Shultz, former Secretary of Defense Bill Perry, former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger, and former Senator Sam Nunn share the personal experiences that led them to write a series of Wall Street Journal op-eds, in support of working toward a world without nuclear weapons and the steps needed to get there. Their efforts reframed the global debate on nuclear issues and, according to the New York Times, “sent waves through the global policy establishment.”

The teacher’s guide underscores the importance of teaching for critical literacy and addresses specific connections to the National Standards for History in the Schools. In addition, students can become part of the national conversation on these important issues. Their engagement is important and participation essential.

Order the teacher's guide and film through SPICE or send an e-mail to

Visit the film website at



October 1, 2011

Lesson plans and worksheets for high school students, developed in conjunction with the Stanford Program on International and Cross-Cultural Education