This educational material can be used together with the film ‘Fires, episode 1: a
teacher’s mission’, produced by OPCW's Media and Public Affairs  Branch)

The material is meant for one lesson of 45‐50 minutes in grade 10 or 11. The lesson material uses Fritz Haber as an example of the dilemmas a chemist faces when asked to develop chemicals for non‐peaceful uses. The material and the questions are meant to encourage a discussion about the role of chemists and the use of chemistry for ethical purposes.

Learning objectives

After the session, students: 

  • Are aware of the ethical dilemmas that chemists could face  
  • Know more about the Chemical Weapons Convention and the tasks of the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons
  • Become aware of their own responsibility


At the end of the lesson, questions you might raise with the students are:

  • What did you think was surprising?
  • What was interesting?  
  • What was valuable?  
  • Would you like to know more about the theme: ‘chemistry for war or peace’?

Download the lesson plans here:

The Fires Project

Through captivating personal stories, which most of us can relate to, the Fires Project questions the spreads of feelings, like traumas, and ideas related to war and weaponry.

Spread the Fires!

FIRES The Trailer. Click on the thumbnail to watch it.