Here is why you should do a family tree with your kids.
Family is important, and military families understand the value of keeping those connections strong, even when they aren’t close together. Have your kids ever asked how you’re related to someone? Or have they shown an interest in learning about family history? Working on a family tree – and involving them – is a great way to explore family history and learn who all the people who love them are.
Learn World History – Even if your family has lived in the United States for centuries, using a family tree to explain world history is a great tool. You can talk about where people lived during specific world events, who participated in them, and how they affected the family. My grandmother immigrated when she was a toddler from Germany between World War I and World War II – this was especially fun for my children to learn as they were also born in Germany.
Learn About Themselves – Children are naturally curious and may want to know why they are short when their friends are tall, or where their blue eyes come from. By adding pictures to family trees, or using examples of people they know today, you can explain how genes are passed down. You may also be able to share how their family military history started or who was the first person to go to college. All fun things for kids to know.
Create Lasting Memories – Because of their military connection and moving around, children may not be able to see their extended family as much as you did while growing up. And your family may miss out on those key events, like weddings and funerals. But by working on a family tree, your children will know and remember the people who share their family history and keep their memories alive.
When I was growing up, a family tree was assigned in elementary school, I remember calling my grandparents and asking them questions, and learning so much about my family. It was such a fun experience; one I can’t wait to recreate with my kids.
Have you ever thought about doing a family tree?