"Emphasize the good that grew out of the tragedy"
"The suggestions range from creating art about tolerance"
Here it comes. Liberal pablum in the classroom. School lessons about 911 should be accurate and fact-based. Children should be schooled in the motivation behind the largest, bloodiest attack on American soil in our nation's history. Students should be taught the bloody and merciless 1,400-year history of Islamic jihad. Mumbai, London, Bali, Baghdad, Madrid, Beslan, Jerusalem, Sderot, Nigeria, Indoneisa, Somalia … the list is endless. Instead, the schools are enforcing the blasphemy laws under the sharia: do not insult Islam.
911 is not about teaching our children that the "tragedy" taught the victims of this mass murder "tolerance," nor is it about Bruce Springsteen's song "The Rising." And it is not a "tragedy." A car accident is tragedy. A terminal illness is a tragedy. This was an open declaration of war. Nowhere in this article or in the school teachers' and official's remarks does anyone dare mention Islam or Islamic jihad.
That is the lesson being taught. That we surrendered.
N.J. schools will offer lessons about 9/11 attacks Wednesday, July 13, 2011
TRENTON — Students in New Jersey, a state that lost about 700 residents in the Sept. 11 attacks, can soon get classroom lessons on the attacks, from the history of terrorism to the heroics of regular people.
Acting state Education Commissioner Christopher Cerf is scheduled to join with a volunteer task force Thursday to unveil a curriculum revolving around Sept. 11.
Implementing the curriculum, which features lessons for students from kindergarten through high school, will be voluntary and open to schools public and private, in New Jersey or elsewhere. Schools in France and Missouri have expressed interest, organizers say.
Donna Gaffney, a co-founder of the 4 Action Initiative, which put the lessons together, said they fit in with New Jersey's school content standards.
"It's important for the kids to be able to understand what happened. This was a national tragedy. So many lives were lost. It's important that we remember not only those people who lost their lives but also had people came together," said Dena Ann Drobish, a third-grade teacher in Parsippany–Troy Hills who helped developed the lessons and has tried them out over the past two years.
The project was conceived by Maryellen Salamone, a co-founder of Families of September 11. Former Gov. Thomas Kean, the co-chairman of the federal Sept. 11 Commission, suggested the tone for the lessons.
It's not the first set of lessons about the attacks, but it's aiming to be particularly expansive.
The curriculum seeks to look at many aspects of the attacks in age-appropriate ways, mostly leaving out the grisly images of the day. There are 56 lessons geared to different age groups.
In the first days of school, for instance — which will fall right around the 10th anniversary of the attacks — Drobish plans to use a lesson about a retired fireboat that was used to help fight the fires at the World Trade Center on Sept. 11, 2001.
The students who will be in her class this fall were born after the attacks. Some of them know details, she said, and others don't. And in her area, only about 25 miles from Manhattan, there are families who lost people in the attacks.
She said she likes the lessons because they emphasize the good that grew out of the tragedy, which she says is needed for students as young as the ones she teaches.
Gaffney said older students will have more complicated lessons, including examining the history of terrorism and examining "The Rising," the song Bruce Springsteen wrote in reaction to the attacks.
The lessons recommend some kind of action. The suggestions range from creating art about tolerance to planning service projects to honor or remember people from their school communities.
"The lesson is that extremism and hate can lead to the ultimate consequence of thousands of innocent people being murdered," said Phil Kirschner, who chairs the New Jersey Commission on Holocaust Education, part of a coalition that developed the curriculum. "We try to teach our students to be what we call 'upstanders,' and not bystanders. If you see hateful speech or actions, you need to confront it."
Drobish, the teacher, said that before she had the lesson plans, she had another approach to talking with students about Sept. 11: "very carefully."