Teaching 9/11: Recollections From A Younger Generation (VIDEOS & PHOTOS)

By Jeff Neumeyer - 21Alive
By Eric Dutkiewicz - 21Alive

September 11, 2013 Updated Sep 11, 2013 at 6:12 PM EDT

OSSIAN, Ind. (21Alive) - Remembering 9/11 through the eyes of those who were young children at the time.

We visited Norwell High School Wednesday, where students got an education in the pain and suffering of a nation.

" My parents just suddenly turned the TV off and we all went outside and just acted normal and played, because I think my parents thought that if it's an attack on America, then they wanted us to like be happy before things got really nasty," said Christian Gearheart, a senior in Kristen Ludwig's government class.

The students shared their 9-11 recollections in a group discussion.

It was a trip down memory lane to September 11, 2001.

" I was just in like complete shock. I was just staring at the TV, like, what just happened," said Kayla Merriman.

" I didn't know if we had harmed other people. I just thought people were doing that just because. I was just so confused," said Dustin Shinabery.

" I can hear around me emergency vehicles heading towards the scene.”

That audio was a clip from a History Channel documentary entitled, “102 Minutes That Changed America," that was played for Ludwig’s students.

The documentary includes instant reactions from people who saw the second Trade Center Tower get hit.

" Every 9/11 I hate, because I know that we will probably watch some video over it. I don't remember anything, but I still want to cry every time, because I know how much it effected our country," said Norwell senior Emily Lampton.

The kids in the classroom were 5 and 6 years old at the time.

But there are other kids in the school who were much younger than that.

"I’m glad that I didn't have to understand what was going on and experience the pain," said sophomore Jessica Vandenboon, who was 3 on 9/11.

But she doesn't want to treat it like it never happened.

"It's part of our history and it's just important to know that we're an important country and people are kind of jealous of us."

"You know, 4 or 5 years from now, I'm going to have kids walking through that I can't ask them the question, what do you remember about this day, because they weren't around. But I think it's really great to be able to have a way for them to see it," said Ludwig, who says watching videos about 9-11 stir up a variety of emotions in her own life.

A dozen years are in the rearview mirror since that fateful day.

But not enough time has passed to make the pain completely go away.

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