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America Responds to Terrorism
How Do You Feel?

How Do You Feel? What Do You Think?

In this activity, students have the opportunity to express their feelings and discuss their perceptions of traumatic events, such as acts of terrorism or violence.

You will need to print out and make copies of the handout What Do You Think? for your students.

1.  One-Word Brainstorm

Ask the students to take a minute or two to think about the one word that best describes their feelings about an incident of terrorism or violence. Record all students’ responses on the board. Review the list and point out how strongly many people feel.

If possible group the various responses under various headings such a fear, anger, confusion and point out that many people are feeling the same thing.

Remind the students that people around the world share the same types of feelings about what has happened and that they are not alone in their thoughts.

2.  Perceptions: What Do You Think?

Tell the students that you are interested in what they think and that now they will have an opportunity to use more than one-word to express their views. Divide the class into pairs or triads of students and distribute the Handout "What Do You Think?" to each group. Tell the groups that they should discuss each question and select a person from their group to record the responses.

Remind the class that these are emotional issues, as the brainstorm showed. Not everyone in their groups needs to agree on the answers to the questions, but should listen to and discuss their views with each other respectfully. Each pair or group should select a person to record the responses to the questions and another person who will act as the "reporter" for the group. Allow students time to discuss and complete the handout.

3.  Sharing Perceptions

Conduct a class discussion using the questions from the handout. Allow each group to share its responses to the questions. Bring closure to the discussion by explaining that as new developments happen, they may change their views about things, and that you will continue to be interested in their thoughts.

 
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