Visiting New York City for the first time is an exciting experience for student tour groups. Many students of junior high and high school age were quite young when 911 occurred. Pennsylvania and the Pentagon in Washington D.C. also suffered casualties that day in separate strikes. Now it’s time for them to study the historical date and events that unfolded that day in the place that was the center of the world’s attention: New York City. On this hallowed ground in Manhattan, also known as Ground Zero, a rebirth of hope and prosperity has taken place during the intermittent years.
Before journeying to New York City, history and social studies teachers can prepare students with online lessons about 911. The websites for the National September 11th Memorial and Museum and the new One World Trade Center are a great place to start. Teachers may also ask students to research magazine and newspaper articles and television news clips of that time period- and present their findings to the class to share.
Ground Zero has changed immensely since 911. It took a long span of time to remove the rubble from the site of the former Twin Towers. The rescue workers and those who carried the rubble away were sensitive enough to keep some mementos of the building and the towers to memorialize the day and better explain the events to those who were not there.
New World Trade Center
One World Trade Center opened to the public in 2015. The project spanned many years in fundraising, planning and construction. One World Trade Center incorporates the materials and concepts of contemporary architecture and design. Best of all, the newly opened One World Trade Center’s 100th floor is designed as the main observatory. Students will love the glass elevator and the commanding view of New York City and New Jersey from the 100th floor. Groups who visit may step into the interactive Sky Portal, which offers remote real time street viewing of the neighborhood below. After finishing the tour, students may visit the gallery to purchase one-of-a-kind souvenirs.
National September 11th Memorial and Museum
Also known as the 911 Memorial and Museum, this site was developed prior to the opening of One World Trade Center, and has been on most student travel itineraries since its opening in May 2014. At the Museum, students will see the actual bedrock of the original World Trade Center and relics of the towers – such as the twisted piece of “impact steel.” Student tour groups will learn more about first responders and victims of the catastrophe on September 11th and examine some of the personal items left behind such as: shoes, glasses or a United Airlines lapel. Fragments of lives lost and stories about first responders heroism make the 911 Museum a must see for students.
The Memorial is arranged to celebrate each victim lost on 911 and on February 26, 1993, when the World Trade Center was bombed for the first time. The name of each person who died in these terrorist attacks is inscribed in bronze around the twin memorial pools. There is also a survivor tree, and a memorial exhibition made up of contributions from families and loved ones.
Post NYC Student Trip Chat Room
Teachers who want to create a true blended learning experience of the trip will want to start either a page on Twitter.com for sharing thoughts and photos during and after the school trip to New York City or a private room where the class may post such materials and thoughts. This activity will allow students to engage their thoughts and share videos and photos post trip – a vital part of any active learning experience.