Twelve years ago, the U.S. suffered the most devastating terrorist attack in our nation’s history. The coordinated suicide attacks on the World Trade Center in New York and the Pentagon in Washington, D.C., claimed the lives of nearly 3,000 people. (National Geographic Channel)
- Read our article “Survivors’ Stories,” and watch some of the videos about 9/11 collected by the National Geographic Channel. An entire episode of a TV series is dedicated to the question “Where Were You?” (Watch the entire 45-minute episode here.) Are you old enough to remember the events of Sept. 11, 2001? Have you had conversations with people who are? What do they remember from that morning? What were their initial reactions? How have their perceptions of the attacks changed since 2001?
- Review “Survivors’ Stories,” about two people who escaped from the Pentagon. Security manager John Yates suffered burns, while Col. Vincent Kam suffered from smoke inhalation. Both avoided more serious injuries by following safety procedures that apply even to much less tragic circumstances. Are you prepared for a fire or other emergency at your home or school?
- Follow Yates’ example by sticking close to the ground. In most fires, more people are injured from smoke inhalation than actual burns, so it’s smart to stay as close to the ground as possible, where smoke is thinnest.
- Follow Yates’ example and stick with other people. He found and stayed with several co-workers as they made their way out of the building. Survivors from the Twin Towers also relied on co-workers, as they remember in this video from the National Geographic Channel.
- Visit this kid-friendly emergency-preparedness page from FEMA. Here, you’ll find tips on making an emergency plan and building an emergency kit. (The site offers specific checklists for kids and adults.)
- Visit this less-kid friendly page for information on emergency planning for schools.
- Read our activity “Preparing for Extreme Natural Events” for help integrating emergency-preparedness training in a classroom.