Thursday, September 11, 2008

Remembering 9/11

Go read Mary Alice's post on 9/11.

I talked to my fifth graders about 9/11 today. They noticed the date this morning and were commenting--"Oh, hey, it's 9/11, guys." I think someone else said, "Cool." September 11 has taken on a kind of folkloric feel for our kids who were, like my students, two or three years old when it happened. So I talked to them about it. I told them about waking up to the phone ringing and what I saw on TV that morning and how scary it was to not know if we were safe. I drew a sketch of the twin towers and showed how they collapsed and told them that thousands of people died--people who had just gotten up to go to work that morning. When I was done talking, their hands flew up. Where were the terrorists from? Why did they do this? I answered the best I could. I told them about our freedom and compared it to what life was like for people, and especially women under the Taliban in Afghanistan. I made them understand that the freedom we have is the reason I'm such a stickler about the Pledge of Allegiance. I think we are so used to enjoying the freedom of our country that we forget its cost. We forget that American families such as Mary Alice's are sacrificing for that freedom every day.

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