You know how frightening the images of Hurricane Katrina and the aftermath are. So imagine how scary they are for kids. Many young children are seeing all the disaster footage on TV and asking questions about what's going on. Even though Katrina didn't make landfall here, the images are still having a huge impact on some Marshpoint Elementary School children.
"I saw a person who had to hold on to a post or else he'd get blown away," said student Chandler Faragalli.
"We watched it on TV one day, and it was a little much, so I turned it off," said teacher Heather Aeger. "We didn't finish watching it."
Aeger wasn't supposed to teach the hurricane lesson until next week, but after seeing some of the storm devastation, she decided to help kids better understand what they were seeing, by letting the kids create their own hurricanes.
"We're making hurricanes on a piece of paper and naming them," said student Paige Reiter.
By doing this exercise, teachers also hope it will ease kids' fears about hurricanes. Especially for students like Madison Smith, who had family members in the path of the storm. "I didn't feel that scared because they weren't there at the time, they had gotten out," she told us.
"They need to realize how important a hurricane is and when we're told to evacuate," said Aeger. "We need to do it. They need to realize how massive this storm really is."
And it seems to be working. The lesson has actually piqued the interest of students who now better understand what Mother Nature can do.
"Now I know what they're like and what they look like," noted Chandler.
Teachers are also telling students about the importance of having a hurricane plan and preparing for the storms.
Marshpoint students and those in other schools will also be holding various events, raising money and collecting supplies for students displaced by the storms.