September 11, 2001 was a day most people will never forget. Educators are now tasked with teaching elementary, middle and even high school students -- who were either too young to remember it or were not even born yet -- about the event.
Nathan Monroe, an English teacher at ATEMS High School within the Abilene Independent School District, devoted his Tuesday lesson plans to helping his students reflect on what happened 11 years ago.
"We're gonna talk today about what happened on September 11, 2001. Probably something you don't remember that well," Monroe told his junior class Tuesday morning.
His students said they only have a very distant memory of 9/11.
"You've got kids that were 5 years old, 6 years old , and they have a memory of something tragic happening, but they really don't -- they don't get it, they don't grasp it," Monroe said.
He said it's vital students are reminded of 9/11.
"As they tell us about history, if we don't look at it, we're destined to repeat it and we have a danger of becoming complacent," Monroe said. "When they start seeing the pictures of people who died on that day ... that brings it home. The real faces of Americans, people just like you and me. That's when it really begins to seem less distant and very close and personal."
The class watched videos, listened to songs and analyzed a poem about 9/11. Monroe said they are also expected to write an essay on how those elements are used to evoke emotion.
"Usually I'm a hardened person -- I don't really let a whole lot get to me," student Dominick Ussery said. "But something like that -- all of those people that died -- it's something that can really get to you. And it really gets to me."
Campuses all across the Big Country honored the victims of 9/11 in different ways Tuesday.