Thursday, September 11, 2014

Remembering 9/11 & Talking To Your Tweens About It

Remembering September 11th, 2001

Today is a day where our nation comes together to remember the events on 9/11. For me, on this day 13 yrs ago, I will never forget what I was doing, where I watched the news at, and the wide range of emotions I felt that day and for a long time to come. As a parent, each year I have talked to my kids about the events that happened on this day back in 2011, but on a level they'd understand. For the first time I sat down and really talked about this day with my son, who come home earlier this week asking questions about it. This morning we talked more about it. 

Though my children were not born yet when this happened, this is a moment in our nation's history that will never be forgotten, and a day that will always be talked about. Sometimes it's hard to talk to our kids about tragic events, even if it happened years ago. This morning I saw a post made by Scholastic Parents on Facebook. They shared an article that helps parents explain the tragic events of 9/11 to tweens through non-fiction and fiction books. You can find the list here

Sometimes I wish there weren't stories like this, so I wouldn't have to tell my kids what a scary place this world can be. It would be so easy if my kids lived in a happily ever after kind of fairy tale we often times find in children's books. It would be comforting if I knew they could be kept safe from the horrible things that are in our world. Then there are other times that I realize if they had that, they'd never realize or learn about the good that can come from such tragedy or get told about the heroic acts that saved more lives. Like the passengers who over took the hijackers of the plane that crashed in the PA field, or the scores of firefighters who lost their lives rushing into the burning World Trade Center to save countless lives, or learn about the people who were on the streets that day who witnessed the planes crashing into the World Trade Centers, and rushed other witnesses to safety. There are many more stories of those who went out of their way to rush others to safety, who put their own lives at risk. 

Through all the tragedy that played out on this day 13 years ago, there are many stories of good. They are many heroes, and many victims from this day. Sometimes it's hard to convey what we want to tell our children. Sometimes it's even harder to know what we should say or find the right words to say so that we can help our children understand and cope with their learning of these events. Sometimes books give us the words we lack. Hopefully someone reading this may find the list of recommended books to help talk to your child, that Scholastic Parents created, helpful. 

I would be most content if my children grew up to be the kind of people who think decorating consists mostly of building enough bookshelves. ~ Anna Quindlen

Good children's literature appeals not only to
the child in the adult, but to the adult in the child.
~ Anonymous ~