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Family History for Kids

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I have an intense love of family history,  but it is something that I developed more in adulthood than when I was younger. I want to help my kids love family history as well.
My parents have spent tons and tons of time doing family history.  I guess I was of the thought that it is mostly done & didn’t pay much attention to it.  A few years back, my parents took all of their kids on a family history trip to the British Isles.  My grandfather immigrated from Wales as a boy and so we still have living relatives in Wales.  My father also served an LDS mission in England.
family history for kids

So, we all (8 kids, 2 parents, plus 6 spouses) traveled over there (thanks to Dad’s frequent flier miles!) to learn about our heritage.  It was a life changing experience to me.  I finally felt like I knew who I was and where I came from.

I got to visit coal mines that my ancestors (including my grandfather) worked in.  I got to visit grave sites that they were buried in, see the church they attended each Sunday.  They had to sit in the balcony because they were in the working class.  It helped me see why my grandfather did not really like religion.

I got to hear the Welsh accent and imagine myself living there, working there, what I might have been like if I grew up in Wales.

The trip made me appreciate my ancestors, come to know them in a way I never thought I would.  It made me want to help them & do more for them.  Since then, I have tried really hard to work on my family history.   I have become a sort of go-to family history person in my family.  I guess it’s a good thing since the torch needs to be passed on in the family eventually.  I love it!  I love the feeling of completing an ancestor’s temple work- sealing them to their family.  (This is a part of my faith.)

My husband is also very interested in learning about and doing his family history.  His family came from the Mormon pioneers.  He loves to collect stories and journals, visit grave sites nearby and has taken the children with him a few times.  They really enjoy doing this with their Dad.  What a great way to learn about their heritage!

Preserve family memories with this:  Family Interview for Parents & Grandparents!

Family History for Kids

I have really been wanting to teach my children about their ancestors and help them to see the importance of knowing about the past.  This week as we studied history I also incorporated family history into their lessons.
We completed a family tree.  It was fun for them to see that they are named after their ancestors.  They also liked seeing the names of all of their great grandparents- some of whom are still living.  We did a timeline of their lives- what they did in their lives each year up until now.   We also drew pictures of their family members and made it into a puzzle.

Family Tree Game

I made a little Family Tree Game for my kids to go along with the family tree.  I wrote names of their family members & ancestors going back to their great grandparents- on popsicle sticks.

Each person in the family tree got their own stick.  Then we had to try to put our tree together.  It was a little tricky for them, but they were starting to get it after a little while.  Even if it takes them a while, I feel it is really important for them to be familiar with the names of their ancestors.

generation photos

Family Generation Pictures

My husband and I have 4 & 5 generation pictures hanging in our homes- (mine is 4, his is 5). This has been another great way to teach my children about the incredible people they came from.
We also have been working on putting together this Family Tree lapbook from Lapbook Lessons.  They have some wonderful printable projects that we are enjoying.
Here are a couple of fun books to go along with this theme:
How do you instill a love of family history and your heritage in your children?

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  1. It looks like you had lots of fun on your trip and during this week’s activities. I also have a passion for family history and love passing it on to my kiddos. We’re actually going to have a couple of units related to family history coming this summer and fall. My kiddos have been very fortunate. Each time we’ve adopted, they’ve been able to go to the temple to be sealed. It’s been so neat for them to have those experiences young. Thank you so much for writing this post. It was a very enjoyable read. 🙂

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