VGS GENEALOGY SCHOOL - CLASSROOM

Activities, projects and resources for learning genealogy.

Helping students and children create their own family trees,
and learn about the tools and techniques of genealogy research.
For use by children, teens, teachers, parents and youth leaders - in a school classroom, at home, or at youth events.

Provided by the Victoria Genealogical Society (VGS), Victoria, BC, Canada

 

"1-2-3 GO!"  -  FIRST STEPS IN LEARNING GENEALOGY

Have you ever looked at the people in the old photos of your family album and wondered "who are these people and how are they related to me?" Finding the answers to these questions is what a genealogist does. When you have completed 1-2-3 GO!, you will have followed the same beginning steps a genealogist would take and you will be your family’s historian!

1-2-3 GO! and Become Your Family’s Historian!

 

1 - TALK TO YOUR FAMILY FIRST!

Your first step is to collect as much information as you can about your family’s history from your family members. Suggestions are given about collecting information and the questions to ask. Don’t forget to include a very important family member – You!

To SEE this activity sheet, go to the Talk To Your Family First! Activity page.

To PRINT this activity sheet, download the Talk to Your Family First! Activity PDF file.

Teacher Notes for Talk To Your Family First! are available.

2 - GROW YOUR FAMILY TREE

A family tree is a chart that shows the members of your family. You will need some of the information that you have gathered in Talk to Your Family First!.

To SEE this activity sheet, go to the Grow Your Family Tree Activity page.

To PRINT this activity sheet, download the Grow Your Family Tree PDF file.

Teacher Notes for Grow Your Family Tree and Who Is Missing From The Family Tree?  are available.

 

MORE FAMILY TREE ACTIVITIES

For those eager to learn more about building a family tree, please try the following additional activities:

Who Is Missing From The Family Tree? - Adding other relatives using Family Group Sheets.
(Teachers notes are available, combined with Grow Your Family Tree - see above.)

Finding The People - Learning how to find information at the B.C. Archives.

One Hundred Years Ago - Using the 1901 Canadian census, find information about your family members living over one hundred years ago. What were their occupations? Where were they born and how long had they been in Canada?
Teacher Notes for One Hundred Years Ago are available.

3 - MY OWN TIME MACHINE

Your third step is to fill in a My Own Time Machine table using information you have gathered from Talk to Your Family First and Grow Your Family Tree. As you work on your table you will be learning how to organize and record your family history. You will also learn some of the basic methods and words used in genealogy.

To SEE this activity sheet, go to the My Own Time Machine Activity page.

To PRINT this activity sheet, download the My Own Time Machine Activity PDF file.

Teacher Notes for My Own Time Machine are available.

 

"MY FAMILY!  MY STORY!" - GENEALOGY PROJECT SERIES

You inherit many things from your family. Maybe your eyes are like your grandmother’s or your hair is the same colour as your father’s. Perhaps you have a beautiful singing voice like your mother or you love the outdoors like your grandfather. By learning about a family heirloom you will discover stories about your family. By preparing a poster of old and new family photos you will be able to compare life today to the lives of your ancestors. Finally you can write your own story which will become part of your family’s story.

 

1 - FAMILY HEIRLOOMS

An heirloom is something that has been in the family for a generation or more. Choose a family keepsake and explore why it was valuable to your family.

To SEE this activity sheet, go to the Family Heirlooms page.

To PRINT this activity sheet, download the Family Heirlooms PDF file.

Teacher Notes for Family Heirlooms are available.

2 - FAMILY PHOTOS

“A picture is worth a thousand words.” Put your family photos on display by using them to create a “Then and Now” poster illustrating your family history.

To SEE this activity sheet, go to the Family Photos page.

To PRINT this activity sheet, download the Family Photos PDF file.

Teacher Notes for Family Photos are available.

3 - MY OWN STORY

Genealogists love reading narrative stories written by their family members because the stories are usually colourful descriptions of events that happened to that person.  Each event must have been quite important to them because they chose to write a story about it!  In this activity you are going to choose an event important to you, and write a story to add to your family’s history.

To SEE this activity sheet, go to the My Own Story page.

To PRINT this activity sheet, download the My Own Story PDF file.

Teacher Notes for My Own Story are available.

 

 

Links to other genealogy activities and resources can be found on our school library and supplies pages.