If you are interested in trying it with the kids in your life, here are the supplies I used:
- Plastic colored eggs
- Glue stick
- Black permanent marker
- Construction paper or cardstock in the same colors as the eggs
- Family photos
The first thing I did was to decide which and how many family members I wanted the kids to identify. I decided to use both my and my husband's immediate family members (and their spouses/children), as well as my husband's grandparents, who my kids know and visit occasionally. I ended up needing 28 eggs. Who to include in your family is completely up to you; and remember, you can always make MORE and only bring out a few at a time so that the child isn't overwhelmed by too many at once.
I then wrote the name of each family member on an egg using the black permanent marker. I used the terms by which the kids would know each person. For example, for my brother, I wrote "Uncle Jeff." For their cousins, I wrote "Cousin Nolan." I also made eggs for each of my kids and put their names on them, along with the words "son" and "daughter" and "brother" and "sister."
You can't expect preschoolers to know the names of everyone in their extended family, even if you do see a lot of them (and we live fairly far from most of our family members, so we don't see them that often.) And if you do this 'game' enough, it WILL help them learn names and faces faster than they would otherwise. Gradually, with the younger children, you can even start to read and show them the names and words on each egg - if you repeat it enough, they may start to recognize those words!
This activity was inspired by two separate blog posts I found on the web. The first is very basic and is great for toddlers. The second involved a somewhat 'competitive' egg hunt with no candy/prizes in the eggs, which I didn't see ending well with my own kids. So, I combined elements of each for the activities I created above for my kids.
Family Tree Color Sorter by Nicole Kavanaugh at The Kavanaugh Report
Easter Egg Family Tree Game by Michelina at Preserving Heritage
©2014, copyright Emily Kowalski Schroeder.