This week I went into school to set up my classroom library. I wanted to get a head start on my room this year so that when I actually go back (August 15!), I can focus on other things and not spend hours laminating, decorating and freaking out about bulletin boards.
One of my goals with my library this year is to organize my books by genre and content, one of those categories being 9/11.
I stated in a previous blogpost how I really want books to do the talking when it comes to the topic of 9/11. I honestly did not know how many children’s books there were on the subject!
In Nine, Ten: A September 11 Story Baskin does something unique in that she describes the days and hours leading up to 9/11. This is done from the viewpoints of a few characters (none of whom ever interact with each other). There’s the family in Shanksville, PA which details the story of the demise of Flight 93; the boy in Brooklyn who can see the destruction from his classroom window; the Muslim family in Columbus, Ohio; and a girl in California whose mother is scheduled to have a business meeting in the towers.
All of these stories give background into what life was life for many Americans prior to 9/11. Then, the reader witnesses what each character goes through during the time of the tragedy. I especially liked the varying points of views, which show students that people all process tragedy differently.
This is definitely one to add to your classroom library or read aloud and have discussions about how people dealt with the events during and after. What were there motivations? Do people still act this way today?
You might be surprised at what your students think.