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White Plains Schools Commemorate 9/11 Anniversary

WHITE PLAINS, N.Y. -- Now that the federal government has designated Sept. 11 as a "day of remembrance and service," the White Plains School District will honor the 10th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks Friday by joining with students across the country in commemorating victims and participating in community projects.

Social Studies Coordinator Lois Gordon organized the schools plan to synch a brief review of what happened on Sept, 11, 2001 with each grade's social studies curriculum.

"It's a bigger effort this year," said Gordon. "We do, every year, have a moment of reflection in each building. At the middle school and high school level most social studies teachers devote some portion of their lessons to 9/11. This year, it's a districtwide effort. The real goal here is not to sensationalize it and not to show kids pictures of plans hitting buildings and people jumping out of windows."

Younger students, such as those in kindergarden through second grade, will talk about how parents, teachers, firefighters, police officers, and soldiers are available to help during times of need. Classes will also discuss concepts like courage, bravery and heroism, according to a press release.

"Our goal, in terms of talking about what happened with the younger kids, is just for them to have some context to put it in when they hear people talking this weekend and see everything on television," said Gordon.

Upper elementary and middle school students will focus on why learning history is critical to understanding the present and discuss how education can help bridge cultural differences and distrust. High school students will examine the United State's role in the global community.

Various school buildings have set up service projects. Gordon said high schoolers have been invited to plant bulbs in front of the school so that flowers bloom every spring in honor of 9/11.

How have you discussed 9/11 with your children? Was it difficult? Email thoughts to and we'll include your responses in future coverage.

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