This Day in History - Hurricane Katrina Makes Landfall

Saturday, August 29, 2009


Do you remember what you were doing on August 29th, 2005? It's one of those days I remember well, like September 11, 2001 when the U.S. was attacked, or July 16, 1999 when JFK Jr and his wife and sister died in a plane crash. These moments seems to be frozen in time and act as a permanent marker so that we may never forget the victims of these tragedies.

In August 2005 when Katrina hit, it was sweltering hot outside. I had a newborn baby girl and a rambunctious three year old boy who was going through lots of changes. My husband had just returned from deployment in the middle east arriving only a week before our daughter was born. I was holed up in the house with the baby because of the heat (our ac could barely keep up and it was 84 degrees in our living room!). Hubs did his best to keep Aiden busy and let the baby sleep. I remember watching the horrors of Katrina on all the news channels for days. Stories of people trapped on roofs, children washed away from their families in floods, alligators swimming the streets and thousands trapped, helpless. I held my baby tight and counted my blessing over and over again. And prayed for all those who had passed on from this world during the raging storm, and for all those still needing help.

Since hurricane season is upon us (we live on the East Coast), now is a great time to discuss weather disasters and disaster preparedness with your family. A fun project for kids is to keep a hurricane tracker map and mark the coordinates of tropical storms and hurricanes as weather updates come in. Discuss how the coordinates relate to nearby cities and towns, how the strength of the storm changes over time, how predictions in direction are made and what signs signal a need to take cover or get out of harms way. Here are some resources to help you get started:

Weather Wiz Kids
National Weather Service
Hurricane Basics
Orlando Sentinel Hurricane Headquarters
Hurricane Guide Downloadable pdf
Tracking Chart

I have seen first hand the damage a smaller storm can do. During Isabel in 2003, I took my son and my dog and got out of dodge. We came home days later to find no power (for 7 more days), stores, restaurants, stores and gas stations closed, little food to be found and destruction. It was a surreal feeling and one I hope not to revisit.

Dana said...

I also remember that day. It was so sad to watch it on TV. Happy Saturday SITS Sharefest!

Mandy said...

Wow, I guess it was fate (and the help of SITS) that led me to your blog. I was THERE when Hurricane Katrina hit! I am from Louisiana and lived there until Nov. 2005, just two months after Katrina hit. We were in Slidell, Louisiana at my husband's place of employment at the time when it hit. And we spent five days there at this military facility (now shut down) and we saw first-hand devastation. We couldn't get in touch with our families for several days so we didn't know if they were safe and vice versa. Firemen, policemen and other rescue teams also stayed there. They brought in rescued folks, including a pregnant teen without a family. It was so surreal. (I could tell some stories). I often forget about this time (block it out perhaps) and we left not long after. But I do keep it in the back of my mind for a reality check. It's always good to have a backup plan for when a weather disaster may strike! Thanks for this post!

sheila said...

I just love how you share this in lesson plans. Very smart! And thanks for the links. I'm gonna pass them onto my sister who just moved to Houston.

Eva Gallant said...

what a great idea!
Just stopping by from SITS to say hi; hope you'll do the same.

yonca said...

Thanks for the links. I remember that day, it was very sad to watch it on tv :(

Have a good weekend!

Aimee said...

I remember when I was a kid I used to love to track the hurricanes on a tracking map. (I grew up in S. Texas near the coast.)

Did you know Galveston is still rebuilding from Hurrican Ike? The news shows a lot about Katrina, but most people don't realize how hard Galveston was hit.

Sharon said...

Hi! Following via MBC.

I love the idea of tracking storms. I remember doing this (centuries ago) when I was in the 5th grade. Was totally fun!

Glad to have found you. While I don't home school I am a teacher who is currently staying at home and raising my two girls. Teaching, lessons plans and all that have been on my mind a lot lately. Can't wait to browse your blog!

mimi said...

They think a mini tornado touched down a few miles from where we live. It was near our town lake...it wiped out the little boat club. It was not too far away, yet I never heard a thing. I thought it was just a regular rain storm. It's crazy the destruction they can cause!

Nina said...

I am so lucky and don't live near the hurricane's but last year when Ike went through we had lots of wind damage here in OHIO. I was amazed at how bad it was. We lost a car to a falling tree. Our neighbor had three trees up route, and I am not talking little trees. We went for 5 days with out power and water. It was rough and made me appreciate these things so much more.

Anonymous said...

What a great resource!

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