Wednesday, September 11, 2013

A Hero Is...Teaching 9/11

Hey yall!
I know that we are all remembering where we were that fateful day 12 years ago. I was a sophomore in high school and was heading in to my 2nd period Anatomy class. My teacher had just turned on the TV and we started watching when the second plane hit.
My little firsties were not even born on that day, yet it is important that they understand why we are a strong nation and why we will always remember 9/11. I approach this topic delicately, as I don't want to scare my babies. So I steer clear of focusing too much on the attack itself and instead focus on the heroes that emerged in the aftermath.
We talked about New York City and the Twin Towers. Then I explained that some bad men flew airplanes into the towers. We talked briefly about the people that lost their lives, but quickly moved on to talk about the firefighters, police units, and doctors that showed such bravery that day.
We read these two books
and made a bubble map about what makes a hero.
Please excuse the plainness of our map. I am not artistic, so our anchor charts are always very straightforward. My kids don't seem to mind, though!
After our discussion of heroes, I had my kiddos write about what makes a hero. My firsties this year really struggle with writing, so we've got our work cut out for us! Even though we've been talking all week about what makes a sentence, I think I only had 2 or 3 students actually write in complete sentences...sigh. We'll get there!
I had seen this adorable craft from Tammy, but knew I wanted to add our writing to the craft. So we came up with this!
If you'd like to snag a copy of the writing paper, click here. It is a full page, but I printed mine 2 to a page, so they would be small enough to fit on the flag.
Did yall teach about 9/11 today? If so, I would LOVE to hear about it!


  1. My anchor charts are very straight forward, too! Love your writing cute.

  2. Love this! I just read "September 12th" to the first grade class I was subbing in today. I have it on my personal bookshelf at home too. Got to love first graders. Have you ever tried four square writing?

  3. Hi Natalie,

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  4. The pictures no longer show up on the blog. Can you let me know which books you read?

  5. This comment has been removed by the author.

  6. Hi,

    My name is Amélie. I'm teaching english in France. I think your idea is brilliant. I did the same after November 13th last year with 12 year old students. They drew about what scared them or what they would like to say to people who are afraid.

    I'm currently preparing a class on heroism, including how American people reacted after 9/11 for 15 year old students. I think that I'm going to show them your ideas. Would you agree sharing pictures from your work?

    Thank you,

  7. I love this! I teach in a multi-needs classroom and would love to do this with them this week. The images are not showing on the post. Could you send the images or titles? Thanks!


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