Updated: Thursday, 08 Sep 2011, 7:11 PM EDT
Published : Thursday, 08 Sep 2011, 7:11 PM EDT
VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (WAVY) - As Hampton Roads remembers 9-11 WAVY.com wondered how the tragic and historic day is being taught in the classroom.
10 years ago, students in high school today were just a few years into elementary school.
WAVY.com visited Cape Henry Collegiate in Virginia Beach and talked with students about what they remember and how it's become a part of their Social Studies classes.
There are no desks inside Mr. Fluharty's first period International Affairs class, just a big conference table.
The style is conversational, relaxed even, but the subject is not.
The group of 17 and 18-year-olds have grown up in a nation at war.
"Probably since second grade all you hear in the news all you see in the newspaper is us in Iraq and Afghanistan, Osama Bin Laden, just war," said senior Khajae Hester.
The images from that day are haunting, but they're part of our painful history.
Teachers like Fluharty saw a teaching opportunity on September 11, 2001and reacted immediately.
Fluharty said, "we're literally being attacked. So I took the kids into the Perry auditorium, pulled down the big screen, put on the news and we sat and watched. I turned down the volume and I said ok, who do you think this is? Who are the guys out there that hate the Americans? "
But not every teacher wanted to address the painful site.
Matt Kennedy, a senior at Cape Henry, remembered, "it was a touchy subject for a lot of people. So, I think the teachers didn't want to say anything that would have offended any of the kids that may have been involved with either the war or governmentally with 9/11."
Fluharty added, "it was what we call the ultimate teaching opportunity. It's history as it's occurring. And it was absolutely critical that the kids were part of it. So that they begin to ask the ultimate question. Why?"
By looking back on archived interviews and news stories, Fluharty hopes his students will be able to explain to their children the reasons behind 9/11 and the impact it continues to have.
"I think 9/11 was a pivotal point in American foreign policy, American history, period. And it was the beginning of a new conflict for America," Fluharty continued.
A conflict all to familiar for this generation of students.
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