I have heard from friends that their kids are getting interested in genealogy. The show, “Who Do You Think You Are” and FamilySearch’s indexing program has seem to catch a lot of teen’s interest. So many kid’s are on the internet, and indexing has given them something to do versus playing video games all day long. But, once they have been bitten by the genealogy bug, we need to provide them with resources and instruction so they will learn the proper way to do their family history.
Susan Provost Beller has written a great resource book, “roots for kids, A Genealogy Guide for Young People”. She had initially written the first edition in 1988, but she realized so much has changed in computers, internet and technology, that she was inspired to do this second edition. Susan writes, ”Young researchers can now use online databases without ever leaving their homes. They can access services like Anestry.com online through their local library. This is wonderful for researching family history. However, it also means there’s yet another kind of information that we have to check out carefully. The same Internet that gives us great family trees can also cause one mistake to be repeated by hundreds of people.” So, with the help of this book, she homes that we can teach our young kids and teens the skills needed to do research properly, but at the same time keep their interest and make it fun and exciting for them!
The chapters are set up as
- An Introduction to Genealogy
- You and Your Family
- Your Parent’s Families
- Asking Questions: Genealogy as Oral History
- Putting It All Together
- Kinds of Records Found Locally
- Finding Local Records on the Internet
- Kinds of State and National Records
- Online Searching in Genealogy Databases
- Evaluating Your Information
- Research Around the World on Your Computer
- The Ultimate Field Trip
- Appendices – Blank forms & Resources
Roots for Kids is based on a twelve-week course developed for Susan’s fourth grade class. Each chapter is based on a forty-five minute classroom session. While it can be used by teachers to supplement their Social Studies curriculum, it can also be used by a whole range of young people in their first attempt in learning genealogical research. Personally, I have been doing genealogy for years, and I learned quite a few new things and tips by reading this book.