Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Today's a happy day and a sad day

Of all the things I dreamed about teaching my kids about it never really dawned on me until today that I'd be the one to teach them about the events of September 11, 2001. My newsfeed was flooded this morning with "We'll always remember/We'll never forget" type status updates and photos-- and I realized that Jackson can't ever remember. To him, it will just be a history lesson, a story.

I've never really felt compelled to homeschool my children, but with this topic, I just knew that it was mine to teach. Not just something to talk about in a classroom someday. So today, I decided we'd talk about it. I organized some photos and videos on my computer and I let him stay up a little bit past naptime to be able to talk with him alone. He was intrigued as soon as I said, "Hey I want to talk to you about something!"

I started out telling him that today was a happy day and kind of a sad day too. First, it's Aunt Laura's 21st birthday!!! Today is a happy day to celebrate her because she's so much fun and we love her!

{we made a quick, impromptu trip to Springfield for a pre-birthday celebration this weekend}

But then we talked about why today is a sad day. A long time ago-- when Mommy still lived with Grammy and Papa and Daddy lived with Grandma Linda and Papa Forrest some people did a mean thing to our country. We talked about our country and the American flag. We talked about the towers and how the planes crashed into them. He saw photos and a short video clip of the tower collapsing and then it just wasn't there anymore.

I knew I didn't want the point of our discussion to be about the bad people in the world, so we spent just as much time talking about how people helped after the crashes. Firefighters, doctors, soldiers. And I explained about how a solider's job is to help protect us and I even snuck in a bit about how sometimes soldiers have to go away for a long time {just as good groundwork in case we experience a deployment in our future}.

Jackson kept asking, "Why do people not like our country?" And I just felt so helpless to say, "I don't have all the answers, honey. But sometimes people are just mean and we won't ever understand."

This was all a rather quick ordeal. Maybe 10, 15 minutes tops. But he was begging to keep looking at pictures and to hear more stories but I insisted that he napped. As soon as he woke up, he was asking to learn more. I wanted to document his reactions so I could share with Derek. This whole concept was brand new to him and his reactions were just so honest and genuine.

What I wasn't expecting was some of the stuff I actually captured. And I put together just a quick video because I can't help but be so proud of my little boy. The first part of the video is him just reflecting on what we've talked about. Oh, his facial expressions when he talks about the "bad guys"-- it just kills me. But, I was nearly in proud-mommy tears as he was talking about growing up to be a "protector" because it's "his job to do when he's a daddy" .... just like his Daddy. Seriously, tears all over again. My heart is full and I pray that his innocence will be around for a long, long time.

As I was quickly exploring Google in attempts to figure out ways to teach this info to a preschooler, I didn't uncover much. I pieced together some photos and videos in a way that worked and if anyone is interested, I'll share. It's nothing spectacular, but apparently he got the idea and he isn't scared or worried (which is what I was really concerned about!). Just let me know!


1 comment:

  1. Wow, what a great reaction! That's very sweet. Good job, mom :) Here's what I showed my class, if that helps or you want it for next year or something: http://www.brainpop.com/socialstudies/ushistory/september11th/


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