9/11: The Day that Changed the World
A Gallery Walk
photographs from the 9/11 Memorial and Museum
Students leaned in to look more closely. The posters lining John Jay High School’s library walls depicted the Twin Towers at the World Trade Center streaming with smoke after they had been hit by two airplanes, the Pentagon smoldering after a third plane had crashed into it and a field in Pennsylvania where a fourth plane had been taken down by its passengers.
The sophomores in Kathleen Dailey’s social studies class were viewing the exhibit “September 11, 2001: The Day That Changed the World,” a collection of photographs from the 9/11 Memorial and Museum. The exhibit, arranged for by Library Media Specialist Lauren Carrigan, would be visited all day long and in the coming week by most of the social studies classes in the school.
It was a cornerstone in John Jay’s commemoration of the twentieth anniversary of terrorist attacks against the United States. It also included an all-school moment of silence led by Principal Siciliano to honor those who lost their lives that day and afterwards.
a changed world since 2001
Back in the classroom, Dailey’s students had time to process the exhibit and the impact of the attack on their world.
The conversation ranged from how quickly the South Tower collapsed—56 minutes after it was struck—to the role of Al-Qaeda in 9/11 and its connection to the American occupation of and recent departure from Afghanistan.
One class comment showed how much the world had changed since 2001. A student indicated his surprise that there is only one video on YouTube of the first plane hitting the World Trade Center—footage taken by happenstance by a fire training crew.
“In 2001, most of us didn't have cell phones,” said Dailey, “and back then, cell phones didn't have video cameras.”