Sunday, September 11, 2011

Ten years have passed since a perfect blue sky morning turned into the blackest of nights..."

Post title taken from this wonderful article

Can you believe it has been 10 years since that fateful day? I remember it clearly. I remember sitting in 8th grade math. I remember feeling strange all day. I remember being confused. I remember being scared. I remember losing my tennis match that afternoon. I remember feeling relieved when i got home that evening. I remember it clearly.

I have been reflecting a lot about this the past few days, as I am faced with the responsibility of answering questions to a class of wide-eyed 4th graders. As I have researched the past week, wondering what to say and how to say it to my students, I immediately realized that with the exception of, I think, 2 of my students, they had not yet been born on that September day 10 years ago. Woah. Now the responsibility has kicked in. What am I supposed to say? How do I answer their questions? Are they too young? Is this too touchy of a subject?

This is the battle that has been zooming through my mind. So as we left school on Friday, I took 5 minutes and asked them what they knew. And told them to think about these events and talk to their parents over the weekend, and we would talk about it on Monday. So as I have been battling and stressing over this responsibily, and trying to figure out what to say, I realized that this truly is a touchy subject. They are young, and hopefully their parents will educate them on these events, but we can take time to reflect on the feelings following the attacks and the heroism and patriotism that reigned.

So  its been decided that we are going to read the book "The Man Who Walked Between the Towers" by Mordicai Gerstein which tells the true story of Philippe Petit, a man who walked between the twin towers of the World Trade Center on a tightrope in 1974. He tells of the marvel of the buildings, his journey and then ends with the book's final painting of the imagined imprint of the towers, now existing "in memory"-linked by Philippe and his high wire. I feel this book helps us to remember that day, without striking up too many questions. Then hopefully we can read either "New York's Bravest" by Mary Pope Osborne or "14 Cows for America" by Carmen Agra Deedy (depending on which one I feel i will cry the least amount...) and then discuss the different heroes from that day, and from our own personal lives. Hopefully it will be a meaningful and lasting discussion, and hopefully I don't need too many tissues.

So now I feel much better about tomorrow and what I am going to say, and I am going to spend the rest of today reflecting and counting my blessings. As well as listening to this over and over again...

God Bless the USA

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