Every year, I tell my 9/11 story. And every year, less and less students have any real tangible knowledge about it.
When I started teaching almost a decade ago, the World Trade Center bombings were still fresh and raw in our minds. The Iraq war was in full swing. Debate still lingered on which project would win out to replace the Twin Towers. Many of my students had their own harrowing stories to tell.
Today, all of my kids…all of them…were born after 9/11. To them, WTC was history. It was a moment the grown ups remember, perhaps even older siblings. But the kids themselves have no real connection anymore.
So even as I tell my story, it gets harder and harder to talk about with filling in the gaps.
Here is a list of resources you may find helpful. They include lesson plans, curricula and their own links to help teach students about 9/11–especially when it’s not part of their own memory.
The 9/11 Memorial Museum has a very good teaching site. Lots of age-appropriate lessons and resources.
Teaching 9-11 is a project out of Dickinson College that is more of a clearinghouse of 9/11 educational material. Still, it is worth a look, especially for their primary source recordings.
Learning from the Challenges of our Times: global security, terrorism, and 9/11 in the classroom was created for New Jersey public schools in 2011 with the partnership of the Liberty Science Center, the New Jersey Commission on Holocaust Education, and Families of September 11. This curriculum was designed specifically for young people with no personal recollection of the event.
Scholastic News 9/11 provides another good resource, and it differentiates for younger and older students.