- Share your favorite childhood foods. Prepare a recipe your mother or grandmother usedto make and explain where it come from and why it is one of your favorites.
- Share photographs of your ancestors with your children and grandchildren, particularly photos that show YOU as a child. Identify older people in the photographs and give their relationship to you.
- On a map of the United States, put a sticker (or push pin) on each town, county or state where your ancestors lived. Save this activity using a WORLD map for later.
- Research a game that was popular when a given ancestor was young (Buck-Buck, is a game your Grampa Bob played when he was a kid in Holyoke in the 1940s.")
- Public libraries offer travel videos - borrow one that tells about an ancestor's homeland. If you're really lucky, you have Ancestral Roots in Prince Edward Island - obviously, you and your kids will enjoy "Anne of Green Gables"!
- Make a family tree using photographs. Young children should be able to find physical characteristics that appear from generation to generation. This "Photo Tree" might make an interesting jig-saw puzzle, too.
- It's never too early for kids to start to keep a journal in which they can write down their daily activities, thoughts and ideas as well as their observations on the world around them.
- Take a "genealogy vacation". Have your children or grandchildren help you with the planning. Retrace the migration route of your ancestors; travel to the towns and homes where they lived. Take a day trip to visit places where YOU lived as a child, or where you attended school.
- With your children or grandchildren, leam one of your ancestral languages - even if it's just a few everyday phrases!! Books and tapes are available at your local public library.
- Encourage your children or grandchildren to plant a small vegetable garden. With your help, they can grow some of their own food, just as their ancestors did.
- Buy a beginning genealogy book written especially for kids, and share it with your children or grandchildren..
- With your children or grandchildren, read an historical novel written for kids set in the time of your ancestors. "Little House on the Prairie and the "American Girl" series are a good starting point.
- Watch for historical reenactments in your area; the/re a great way to leam about history..
- Visit Heritage Museums and historic buildings in your area. These give your kids a chance to see "real stuff" from Olden Days" (even if their ancestors didn't live in the area).
Copyright 2006 by Margaret V. Reid