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Do Now

What do you remember about the day of September 11, 2001? Consider one of these follow-up questions to help with your response: Where were you when you heard about it? Who were you with? What do you remember your parents telling you about it? Do you remember the reactions of the people around you? Do you recall any of your own thoughts from that moment?


On the morning of Tuesday, September 11, 2001, nineteen members of the militant Islamic group al-Qaeda hijacked four commercial passenger jet airliners to conduct coordinated suicide attacks on America’s East Coast. Two airlines were intentionally crashed into both towers of the World Trade Center in New York City, killing everyone on board and decimating the buildings. The third plane crashed into the Pentagon in Washington D.C. and the fourth, also headed towards Washington – supposedly for either the Capitol Building or the White House – crashed in a rural field in Pennsylvania after passengers attempted to retake control of the plane. In all, the terrorist attacks on that day claimed the lives of nearly 3,000 people. It was the first foreign attack on American soil since the Japanese bombing of Pearl Harbor in 1941. The events had a dramatic effect on America’s foreign and domestic security policies, ushering in a series of new laws and procedures, including the PATRIOT Act and the creation of the Department of Homeland Security. The 9-11 attacks also fueled America’s military offensive in Afghanistan and indirectly led to the War in Iraq two years later. Both conflicts continue today.


California Report segment 9/11 Victim’s Family Remembers
Many of the victims of the September 11th terrorist attacks lived in California, including Deora Bodley, a Santa Clara University student who died when Flight 93 crashed into a Shanksville, Pennsylvania field. On the second anniversary of the national tragedy, reporter Judy Campbell talked with the Bodley’s family about their grief and the strength that they have gotten from her memory. Reporter: Judy Campbell

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More Resources for Follow-up Lessons

KQED Forum’s segment Ten Years Later, Are We Safer? I Fri, August 19, 2011 — 10:00AM
As the 10th anniversary of the Sept. 11 terror attacks nears, many are asking if we’re safer now than we were before the attacks. Has heightened security and extra screening at the airport — including removing your shoes and belt — made you feel safer?

As part of our series on how the country has changed since 9/11, we take up these questions with security experts.

NPR’s Understanding America After 9/11

We knew life in America would never be the same after the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, but no one knew exactly how it would change. How has our society and country come to terms since then? Public radio tackles this question with Understanding America after 9/11, a week of special coverage on stations nationwide.

  • Adryann Jackson

    Does anyone remember 9/11?


Matthew Green

Matthew Green produces and edits The Lowdown, KQED’s multimedia news education blog, an online resource for educators and the general public. He previously taught journalism at Fremont High School in East Oakland, and has written for numerous local publications, including the Oakland Tribune and San Francisco Chronicle. Email:; Twitter: @KQEDlowdown

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