Around St. Helena for Dec. 4, 2014 _lowres

Stephanie Warren

Those of us who lived through Sept. 11, 2001, remember where we were when we got the news, what we were doing, how we felt.

On Friday, solemn ceremonies will mark that fateful day 14 years ago by honoring those who lost their lives and the many who did what they could to help.

The attacks have had far-reaching consequences ranging from increased airport security to discrimination against Muslims and Arab-Americans to the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq in which hundreds of thousands have died.

In short, the 9/11 attacks have changed the course of history. But for most of our children, Sept. 11 is just that: history. Many were not even born, and the rest were quite young when the attacks occurred.

For those who were old enough to watch those events unfold, that day and the aftermath of the attacks have left an indelible mark. For those too young to remember, the legacy of 9/11 shapes their lives as a central event in world history.

How do you express the profound meaning of the word “terrorism” in a constructive context to children? Here are a few suggestions:

Be real : Honesty is important when talking about 9/11 with your children, so don’t be afraid to share how you really felt that day. Kids pick up on how you really feel beneath your words.

Do something : There are so many opportunities to turn the pain of 9/11 into something more positive. Mark this year’s anniversary with actions that help someone else — or remember those who were lost. Do something as a family on Friday to memorialize the day and pay tribute to those who died.

Be proactive : Terrorism didn’t end with the death of Osama bin Laden. It’s OK to explain that to your kids so they understand that although there is still a threat of terrorism, there is a lot being done to prevent another attack.

Keep it age-appropriate : Older children are probably ready to hear and see more about the attacks so they can understand what happened more deeply. But for younger children, it’s enough to be truthful without sharing everything.

Hawks vs. Warriors

St. Helena College and Career Academy football team will host Amite High School on Friday at the old middle school football field in Greensburg. Kickoff is at 7 p.m. Come out and support the Hawks and show your school spirit.

Contact Stephanie Warren by phone at (985) 517-4869 or email at swarren@theadvocate.com.