Hopefully, at these family gatherings, we also remember the loved ones who are no longer with us. As genealogists, through our research, we know all too well how much our ancestors sacrificed and struggled over the decades and centuries to make our modern freedoms and comforts possible.
When teaching our children family history, I advocate sharing with them the good stories as well as the bad. Research has shown that children who know more about the full spectrum of their ancestors' experiences (the triumphs AND the struggles), have more self-confidence and bounce back from adversity better than children who know little of their family's past.
I am also an advocate of using the stories from our family histories to promote within our children modern-day empathy for the people around them and the trials they face everyday. In addition, we want that empathy to lead to action, right? We want our children to not only empathize with others in times of trouble, but to want to help them as well.
This two-page worksheet set is designed to help kids make that connection between an ancestor's story and the difficult life events sometimes experienced by those around them. How can I help a child whose parent just lost his/her job? How can I bring happiness to a someone who is sick and stuck in a hospital? How can I help a classmate who is criticized because of a foreign accent, skin color, or religious beliefs? How can I help a family who just lost a loved one? The list goes on and on. (Click on either image to download the two-page PDF.)
©2016 Emily Kowalski Schroeder. All rights reserved.