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The (Family)Tree Of Life: Giving Your Kids The Gift Of Family And History

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By Mia Bolaris-Forget

With the holidays behind us we can reflect on how we spent them, how well our (heartfelt) gifts went over, and how well we spent our time.

According to experts, one of the greatest gifts we can give each other and our children as a family, is not only time spent together, but turning the holidays into quality gatherings where children are afforded the opportunity to bond with other family member and get a lesson in family history.

They go on to note, that while trying to teach them (the kids) about great-grandparents, grandparent, aunts, uncles, etc, is all part of the “lesson” the real treat is in teaching them about their family tree via fascinating stories about their relatives and through the eyes of their ancestors.

According to experts today’s families, especially with (adult) children living in various (and not so close by) locations tend to be more disconnected than in the past. It’s not very likely that kids will keep in touch with aunts, uncles, or even grandparents and the times available for family get-togethers is also limited. Exposure and an “education” in family genealogy and history will help youngsters better understand themselves and their family. And, it will help build a sense of pride and belonging. And, professionals suggest parents encouraging extended festivities where children actually engage in conversation with their “elders” (even older cousins, nieces, nephews, etc) and ask more than just yes and no questions. And, if that’s not always an available or easy option, parents and other adults should designate a time either before or after opening gifts where the family is required to gather and share one story or experience of their own. And, children (of all ages) should be encouraged to participate too.

Feel free to take out the photo album as an incentive and have kids ask questions about past holidays and family celebrations. You may even want to make your own notations including dates and specific places.

Long Island Family Life & Parenting Articles > The (Family)Tree Of Life: Giving Your Kids The Gift Of Family And History

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