Grade Levels: 6-8, 9-12

NOTE TO EDUCATORS: The movie featured in this lesson plan describes the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001. Due to the violent nature of this topic, we suggest previewing the movie before showing it to the class.

*Click to open and customize your own copy of the September 11th Lesson Plan

This lesson accompanies the BrainPOP topic September 11th, and deepens students’ understanding of the events that led to the September 11 attacks and their impact on the United States. Students demonstrate understanding through a variety of  projects.

Step 1: ACTIVATE PRIOR KNOWLEDGE

Ask: What do you know or what have you heard about what happened on September 11, 2001?

Depending on where you live in the country, you may have students who have family or friends directly impacted by the attacks. If so, you can use this opportunity for them to share their stories, if they want or are comfortable.

Step 2: BUILD BACKGROUND

  • Read aloud the description on the September 11th topic page.
  • Play the Movie, pausing to check for understanding.
  • Have students read one of the following Related Reading articles: “In Depth,” “Did You Know,” “Real Life” or “Sickness and Health”  Partner them with someone who read a different article to share what they learned with each other.

Step 3: ENGAGE
Students express what they learned about September 11th while practicing essential literacy skills with one or more of the following activities. Differentiate by assigning ones that meet individual student needs.

  • Make-a-Movie: Make a documentary showing the ways in which people throughout the United States responded to the attacks of September 11. (Essential Literacy Skill: Determine central ideas)
  • Make-a-Map: Create a timeline of the events of September 11, 2001 and the events that followed.  (Essential Literacy Skill: Summarize key details)
  • Creative CodingCode an exhibit honoring 9/11 heroes or create a memorial to those who died. (Essential Literacy Skill: Make logical inferences from explicit details)
  • Primary Source Activity: Listen to the excerpt from George W. Bush’s speech, and cite details to answer the questions. (Essential Literacy Skill: Cite specific evidence to support conclusions drawn)

Step 4: APPLY & ASSESS 

Apply: Students take the September 11th Challenge, applying essential literacy skills while demonstrating what they learned about this topic.

Assess: Wrap up the lesson with the September 11th Quiz

Additional Support Resources:

Lesson Plan Common Core State Standards Alignments

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