Pleasant Valley Junior High students learn history of Sept. 11, unity and patriotism that followed

Published: Sep. 10, 2021 at 1:24 AM CDT
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LE CLAIRE, Iowa (KWQC) - Students at Pleasant Valley Junior High School spent the week learning about the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks and the American patriotism and unity that followed.

“They didn’t live it like I did and their parents did. So their understanding of it is very minimal. Our students really don’t know a lot about it. They don’t know what caused it,” Social Studies Teacher Jeff Paul said, “They just know the way they’ve grown up. And they don’t realize this was something that really brought the country together.”

As part of the lesson, students watched a documentary together that featured video, pictures, and accounts from the day. But for the eighth graders who weren’t born until after the attack, it could be hard to full grasp its magnitude.

“With our 8th grade U.S. curriculum and standards that we have to talk about, we talk about some really bad things that happened in our past. They are important to talk about and discuss, but also what are the good things that did come from it. I think that is something that can really unite us through the good and the bad,” U.S. History Teacher Amber Hall said.

A goal of the week’s lesson is: what does patriotism mean?

“They come up with all these ideas. Fireworks, wearing the colors, what they can do. Acts of service, as well as military. Then after the documentary we reflect on how did this documentary show patriotism. And now it’s what’s your interpretation,” Hall said.

The purpose is to show the good that came from the tragic day 20 years ago.

“We don’t want to forget that uniting spirit, so that’s what we’re doing,” Paul said.

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