Every student at the Canandaigua Middle School was born well after September 11, 2001, one of the most harrowing days in our country’s history. How does the school effectively teach students about an event that impacts their lives (and ours) so powerfully, yet can be distant and unreal to them due to their age?

“eleven”, a school-wide read for all students during Advisory each Tuesday morning at the Canandaigua Middle School, is one way. Written by Tom Rogers, “eleven” is a compelling story about a boy who’s September birthday is about to become something beyond imagining.

“Through ‘eleven’, our Middle School students can ‘live’ September 11th much like we did,” says CMS Principal John Arthur. “The book is highly successful in bringing a day that remains so vivid to us to full reality for a young person born into the world that came after. We will also be using some source documents to support understanding of its setting.

“Additionally, we are very excited to have scheduled three video conferencing sessions with author Tom Rogers during which he will engage with students live from his California home. This is a wonderful opportunity for our kids!”

The video conference sessions will be on November 6, 7, and 8 – each about an hour long.

Annette Annesi accepting the Wilcox Award