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Resources For Facilitating Better Conversations About 9/11 With Kids, Teens

image of a smiling child wearing a head covering in a classroom.
The Family and Youth Institute

The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) reports a spike in anti-Muslim sentiments this time of year. With the 20th anniversary of the September 11th attacks this weekend, CAIR-Ohio is partnering on resources for teachers and parents to better facilitate conversations with young kids and teens.

Outreach Director Amina Barhumi says the guides include ways to create a welcoming climate and healthy learning environment for everyone.

"I see this from a lens of positivity; as a lens of ensuring that schools in particular are safe spaces for students to learn; to have difficult conversations. I think that's exceptionally important. I think the ask here is to have these conversations with the right tools and resources and context."

She says CAIR-Ohio receives requests from teachers looking for tools to improve the way they teach and talk with students about what happened. They also hear from parents asking for guidance on how to approach teachers or school leaders after bullying incidents or lessons that are wrong or go awry and hurt their children.

"These are topics that are heavy and I think unpacking and breaking them down is really helpful," Barhumi says. "There are research links and infographs that speak in general about the Muslim community, the Islamophobia and anti-Muslim discrimination that's a reality for every Muslim."

She points out the trauma of 9/11 is twofold for Muslims. There's the trauma of the attack on this country, and the trauma of being blamed for it because of their religion or background.

The resource guides are free online at the following links:

Senior Editor and reporter at WVXU with more than 20 years experience in public radio; formerly news and public affairs producer with WMUB. Would really like to meet your dog.