“Like branches on a tree, we all grow in different directions, but our roots keep us all together.”
There is a great sense of joy and pride in coming together as a family to share and discover factoids you never knew about your family history. It reminds you of the bigger community you are a part of. More importantly, it is an opportunity for family members to come together and strengthen their ties.
If you are an elder in the family, you would be familiar with stories of distant relatives, ancestors and long lost family traditions. Building a family tree together with your grandchildren is a great opportunity for you to bind together your family’s past, present and future. Here are a few tips to help you out on this adventure!
Talk About Your History
The first step to building a family tree is to get the conversation started on your family history. Have your grandchildren gather around you as you share stories of your family tradition. Involve other family members such as your children and cousins in this activity as well. Don’t hesitate to approach relatives who you may not have spoken to in years. This activity will not only unite everyone, but also remind the young ones of the importance of family.
Document Your Discoveries
Putting together everything that you know and have learnt about your family is the most exciting part of this adventure! Work backwards from the present generation to the older ones. Encourage your grandchildren to get creative as you sketch out visual records of your history. You could even dedicate an entire wall in your home to your family tree. The little ones would be excited to bring out their paints and brushes!
Over the years, the branches on this tree will grow — be sure to make some extra space along the sides. You could even compile a family photo album with pictures of all the family members linked together.
Enjoy the Process!
As you attempt to map out your family history, there may be several dates, names or relationships that you may not be able to recall. Don’t fret too much over the details and enjoy the opportunity to spend quality time with your family. While your family tree may not be perfect, your grandchildren will appreciate the opportunity to bond with their grandparents and take home important lessons while having fun.
Getting together with your grandchildren to a build a family tree is a great way to unite your family and share the joy of preserving your family’s heritage. Parents can trace where the family began and discover where it is headed. More than just a fun family activity, the family tree can guide and reassure for the younger generation as they set to explore their own path in the years to come.