National Writing Project

Response to September 11: NWP Gathers Resources for Educators Online

By: NWP Staff
Publication: The Voice, Vol. 6, No. 5
Date: November-December 2001

Summary: NWP has compiled a list of resources for educators, students, and caregivers in response to the tragic events of September 11, and has also created an online form for sharing additional resources and comments.


Immediately following the tragic events of September 11, 2001, educators throughout the country began to send one another resources to help support conversations with students in their classrooms and within families in their communities. The National Writing Project has compiled a list of online resources, including several that were sent among NWP colleagues and friends, which can now be found on the NWP website at Response to September 11th.

The resources are divided into Links for Educators, and Links for Students and Caregivers. Visitors to the site are invited to submit an online form for further information and commentary. Each link leads to a variety of resources, ranging from sites one can visit to gather current articles with related lessons to sites that help parents talk to their children about some of the tough questions and issues.

A Sampling of Online Resources

Among the listed links is one to the website of the National Association of School Psychologists. The psychologists provide help in assisting children in coping with this national tragedy. The site considers, for instance, the varied ways children deal with grief. For example, children may ask a question over and over, not because they don't understand the facts, but because the information is so hard to accept.

The site of the American Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee suggests ways for educators to reduce hostility toward Arab-American students. It advocates, for instance, that student government leaders make public statements in support of tolerance and that public forums be held to allow students a chance to express their views.

The site of the Coalition for Essential Schools poses provocative propositions for discussion. For instance, students are asked to agree or disagree with the following statement: "The hijackers were able to do what they did because they had in their minds denied the humanity of the people they set out to kill." Those who agree with this statement are then asked to consider the question, "How does the process of dehumanization occur? How do people come to see others as less than human or their lives as unimportant?"

Ideas, Comments, and Suggestions Wanted

Because the above-mentioned sites are just a few of those available, we encourage you to visit the NWP website itself. Further, we invite you to send additional resources that you have found useful in exploring these complicated and challenging subjects. As well, in composing this list, members of the NWP network have also been thinking more broadly about how to support writing and the sharing of writing during the difficult times ahead. We welcome any ideas you have to contribute to this conversation. These additional resources, and even comments or suggestions, can be emailed to or entered online at the website mentioned above.

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