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Educating a New Generation of Students about 9/11

Educators memorialize events of 9/11 at their schools and in their curriculum

Ten years may have passed, but the memory of Sep. 11 remains vivid in the minds of those who lived through it. Although students may have been very young or not yet born, when the World Trade Center was attacked, educators have found ways to memorialize at their schools and in their curriculum. Building fragments, particularly, have made their way around New York, Connecticut and New Jersey. A steel beam from the North Tower was delivered to Barnegat Township (N.J.) School District and will be displayed at the district's high school. Superintendent Karen Wood said, "Almost 10 years after the attacks across New York, Washington, D.C., and Shanksville, Pa., an entire generation did not witness what happened that day," at an event held Aug. 10 upon the delivery of the beam, reported the Press of Atlantic City. "We have a responsibility to educate the generations to come so they never forget what occurred on Sep. 11, 2001." Schools around the country have gotten involved. A group of students from White Knoll Middle School in Lexington (S.C.) School District One raised $540,000 in just three months after the attacks to buy the Fire Department of New York a new truck for its Red Hook neighborhood in Brooklyn. All seven firefighters were killed when Tower One fell.

The September 11th Education Trust, an organization comprised of victims' family members, rescue workers, survivors and educators, launched a curriculum, the September 11th Education Program, in 2008 for grades 6-12 teaching about the terrorist attacks and their aftermath through video interviews.

For many, the events of Sep. 11 were the ultimate "teachable moment" and will be incorporated in schools' culture for years to come.