Springfield librarian shares how to talk to your children about 9/11 through books

Published: Sep. 11, 2021 at 9:26 PM CDT|Updated: Sep. 11, 2021 at 10:25 PM CDT
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SPRINGFIELD, Mo. (KY3) - The Springfield-Greene County Library District says there are certain ways to talk to your children and start a conversation about 9/11.

In addition to that, librarians says it’s important to discuss what happened to adults who are too young to remember the day.

“Working as a children’s librarian, I found that picture books often have a very powerful effect on people of all ages,” said Ashley Fillmer.

Fillmer says many children are eager to learn about 9/11 and will naturally ask questions.

”Children have a lot of questions about scary and confusing events that they see on the news, but they might not know how to ask questions about them or if I can ask questions about them,” said Fillmer.

One recommendation for adults and children is the picture book “This Very Tree: A Story of 9/11, Resilience, and Regrowth” by Sean Rubin.

According to the blog post, “The book begins before the attacks, as the tree reflects on its environment and role as a city tree. “It was an ordinary morning. Until it wasn’t.”

“The attacks unfold wordlessly, using the imagery of smoke, onlooker’s faces and broken steel columns to describe the chaotic scene. The tree is buried. The tree begins to lose hope. But the tree is rescued, and its recovery begins, paralleling the nation’s recovery with illustrations of the new branches sprouting from the damaged trunk mimicking the cranes atop One World Trade Center tower as it grows higher and higher,” said the post.

”I was reading it at the service desk and trying really hard not to become emotional,” said Fillmer. “We’re just trying to create a welcoming space to have that kind of conversation here or you don’t have to sit a child down and say that she was a bunch of scary stuff that happened, but then if they bring up the topic, or any other scary topics, we can talk about that,” said Fillmer.

Fillmer is hoping her recommendations can help guide others.

“Now, 20 years later, it makes me feel really good to be able to just give a little bit of help toward children and their families who might want to have a conversation about this,” said Fillmer.

If you want to find more books about understanding 9/11 you can, CLICK HERE.

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