September 11th, 2001 (a simple account for children)

What It Is

This book, written and illustrated in the months immediately following September 11th, 2001, is a chronological, factual telling of the day’s horrific events in New York City, Washington, DC and Pennsylvania. The illustrations were done by fifth and sixth grade students at a Cincinnati elementary school.

Why We Recommend It

With the 10th anniversary of 9-11 upon us, children will likely be exposed to imagery and conversations about that day. My daughter recently asked “What’s September 11th?” Her question struck me with a renewed realization that many of our children are the first generation who did not experience those horrific moments as they happened. While many, like myself, may still have a hard time believing such hateful acts could occur, 9-11 is an important part of world history, and one that should be remembered in honor of the thousands who lost their lives, acted heroically to preserve our freedom, and bravely resolved to move forward with their heads held high.

This book is a useful way to explain 9-11’s chain of events, who caused them and why, without dramatization or harsh imagery. Nancy Poffenberger’s telling is direct and to-the-point, but not frightening. For example, she defines “terrorist” in a manner that children can understand. Also, the fact that the book is illustrated by children in Ohio underscores that all Americans, regardless of where they live, were affected by the tragedy of 9-11.

Who’s Going to Appreciate It

For those parents, teachers and caregivers who want to present kids of any age with a matter-of-fact telling of 9-11 without political commentary, this book can be a very effective tool. As such, Ms. Poffenberger’s book puts 9-11 in a context that most children can understand. The publisher’s age range is wide and this book is geared to the younger end of the 6-12 span. Older kids may have more in-depth questions, however the narrative can be useful to open up a discussion. Because parents know their kids best, I recommend a quick review of any book dealing with sensitive topics before sharing them with your kids.

Reading Time

About 3-4 minutes

Read-It-Again Points

0 out of 10

Book Information

September 11th, 2001 (a simple account for children)
By: Nancy Poffenberger; Illustrated by Students from Lotspeich School, (Cincinnati)
Published by: Fun Publishing (2002)
Approximate retail price: $8.95
Publisher’s recommended ages: 6 - 12


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