This morning, at 11a.m. Eastern Time, President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama led the nation in a moment of silence to honor of the victims of the tragedy in Tucson this weekend.
The Tucson tragedy took place Saturday, January 8 when 22-year-old Jared Lee Loughman opened fire at the meeting “Congress on Your Corner” at a Safeway supermarket in Tucson, Arizona. The Arizona shooter killed six people, including 9-year-old Christina Taylor Green (granddaughter of former Phillies manager Dallas Green) and injured 14 others, including U.S. Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords, who is now in stable condition.
At Pioneer Elementary School in Mesa, Arizona, students participated in today’s moment of silence for one minute by stopping classes and putting their heads on their desks.
Pioneer principal Mike Davis announced the moment of silence earlier that morning, telling the students, “On Saturday, Jan. 8, a senseless act of violence was perpetrated in Tucson. This is a time to come together in prayer or reflection, keeping the victims and their families close to our hearts.”
Pioneer was not the only school to observe Obama’s request for a moment of silence. All over the country, schools made the decision to participate. Many teachers have also worked the news of the shooting into their curriculum, using it as a learning opportunity.
A fifth-grade teacher at Pioneer Elementary, Gina Kelley, said she spent the minutes prior to the moment of silence telling the students the facts about the Tucson shooting, which many had not heard.
Although the shooting and moment of silence are good opportunities to discuss the negative outcomes of violence with kids, it’s important to make sure you and your kids’ teachers are discussing the tragedy in an age-appropriate way and are staying away from the rumors surrounding the events, keeping only to the facts.
Did you participate in the moment of silence today? Do you know if your child’s school did? Have you discussed the Tucson shooting with your kids yet?
Photo: Flickr/Nathan Hoskins