The Process

  1. First you want to think through some of your own personal views, so take 15 minutes to write down some thoughts in your DR/TA guide on the events of September 11, 2001. Focus on the first three sections of the guide, including facts you know about 9/11, things you think you know, and what you want to gain from this activity. Please use the following questions as a guide for your writing: What do you remember about that day? How did you feel in the immediate days following 9/11? Do you think that it has changed the way you perceive your daily world? If so, how? Nine years later, how do you feel about 9/11?
  2. Visit to get a more thorough background understanding of the events. Watch several of the videos on the site.
  3. Read the short story The View from Mrs. Thompson’s, written in 2001 by David Foster Wallace, a copy of which is attached. This will be the starting point for you to consider a perspective immediately after 9/11. You will continue to gather perspectives over the next nine years. Keep a dialogue journal for everything you read, writing down any quotes that strike you as especially important. This will help you later in writing your foreword.
  4. Explore several of the perspectives from the following website, and keep your dialogue journal:
  5. Read the following article/blog entries, and keep a dialogue journal:
  6. Visit the following website and browse through the poems linked from another anthology on 9/11, and keep your dialogue journal: 
  7. Visit the following site for some additional short stories, and keep your dialogue journal:
  8. Visit the following website to view some art that was featured in the New York Times. This will help you see the kinds of art you might consider for your cover page, but you are not limited to the pieces featured on the following slide show:
  9. Create a table of contents page, making sure you name the author, the name of the work, and cite the original source of the work in MLA format. Because this is a hypothetical work that will not actually be published, assume you have access to any work and that the copyrights have been cleared (you will not need to attach copies of the works, but you must demonstrate that you have read them – see foreword assignment below).
  10. Write your foreword, using the RAFT strategies and persuasive writing concepts we have studied. Remember that you are an editor compiling stories for a widespread audience, and you are writing a foreword to be included in an anthology of writings about 9/11 perspectives. The foreword should be compelling, drawing in the reader to continue reading the works in the anthology. This is also where you will defend the choices you have made, so make sure you also include interesting sections on each of the works you listed in your table of contents – give the reader just enough information about each literary work so that they will want to read it, but don’t give the whole story away! Think of this writing almost like a movie trailer that grabs an audience, but doesn’t give away the ending.
  11. Choose and format the photograph or art for the cover page. Write a few sentences about the photo or art piece describing its import and impact, as a caption under the work. Please make sure you credit the author and title of the work.
  12. Finish your DR/TA guide, writing a section about what you have learned in doing this WebQuest.

With a daily meeting schedule of classes lasting fifty minutes, this WebQuest will take us two weeks to complete. We will devote the first week to finding resources. I will give you time in class during the second week to start your final writing assignments. We will also have individual conferences midweek so that we can discuss your progress and so that you will have an opportunity to ask me any questions or address any concerns you have about the assignment. Please be aware that we will begin other lessons after conferences on the second week, so you will need to finish your assignment outside of class.