Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Patriot's Day

As all of you know, today is September 11th. For all of us "adults" (I use the term loosely) that date will never have the same meaning as it did before 2001, but for the 7 and 8 year olds in my class, it's just another day. They were still years from being born on that tragic day and they don't have "I remember where I was..." stories to tell. The issue for today was: How do we address the importance of the day without scaring the children or oversharing beyond what parents find appropriate. What was even more difficult was the fact that none of the other second grade teachers were doing anything special for the day and my mentor teacher was out of town to greet her son-in-law returning from Afghanistan! So after some searching, I found a nice idea that was simple, but to the point. We made cards for police officers and firefighters thanking them for their service!

The kids came in with this prompt on the board:
     Good Morning! Today is September 11th, Patriot's Day. Please make a card for a police officer or a firefighter thanking them for keeping us safe.

They could choose a piece of red, white, or blue construction paper and use their crayons. I also had a list of words on the board for spelling reasons and to give kids an idea of what to write:

  • Thank you
  • Brave
  • Protecting
  • People
  • Courage
  • Hero
Some of the cards were really sweet! Here's one to a police officer:
"America need's you officer's"
Notice she drew ALL 50 STARS on that American flag. Dedication right there.

"thank you for all the things you do to protect us"
You can tell she worked hard on getting it just right! Here's one for a firefighter:
"Thank you" with a crown? and some stars

"Dear firerfiter's. You are the best. Do you now about the fire by the animel shelter?" And then a place for an answer, of course. I had to warn her that she may not get an answer...
So now I have the issue of how to give these heartwarming cards to police officers and firefighters... I may give the police ones to my dad (a police officer in Jacksonville) to give to rookies, and then swing by a fire station to drop off the firefighter ones. Any better ideas??

So that's how we remembered the victims of 9/11: celebrating the heros of our nation. I wish I had more time to plan a lesson, because I'm thinking of so much more stuff I could have done. But that's a start! How did your school remember today?


  1. Jenni, I think this is an awesome idea for 9/11. Did you figure out where to send the cards?

    PS - Hope you're enjoying your new internship!!!

  2. Thanks Kristin! I ended up giving them all to my dad. He put the police ones in the JSO lounge and said they read them all aloud and LOVED them. Then he stopped by a fire station and dropped the others off. And I am definitely enjoying my internship!