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02 October 2011

A Safeguard and Protection

After listening to Brother Bednar's talk in Conference I wanted to find a way to help Monkey begin to learn to love family history work. Although the talk was primarily addressed to youth, Brother Bednar also specifically included children in his remarks. Then, after I found another clip (below) on lds.org, my husband and I became even more determined to find a way to make this happen.

I will hardly ever ask the question, "Are you preparing to go on a mission?" I will ask the question, "Are you worthy to be in the temple? And will you be next year? And will you be the year after that? Are you doing the research in your own family, and helping other people with their research?" 

That, for a young person, in the wickedness of the world in which we live today, is one of the greatest safeguards against the temptations of the adversary.

-David A.Bednar

A safeguard against the temptations of the adversary; protection from the wickedness of our world.

We need that.

We need to protect our children so they can grow up to the Lord! Now that he says it, it makes perfect sense that the temple would offer that protection to our children and youth. Of course the temple will draw my children closer to the Lord! Funny, President Hunter invited us to make the temple the great symbol of our membership, but in teaching my son I never thought to invite him to do the same.

OK. Now what. My big boy doesn't read yet. Not enough, anyway. And the little one not at all. (Though he does point at my alphabet strips and say, "That-- me!") How can I involve such little ones in family history and temple work? Obviously neither one can do real research just yet.

Things we can do

  • Tell ancestor stories.
  • Make an "Ancestor Book" - this would be good for long, "boring" Sundays, or for Family Home Evenings.
  • If I get names ready maybe they can help print and organize the temple cards
  • With (a lot of) help, Monkey could put dates into PAF after a temple trip
  • We could find space for an "Ancestor Map" and mark where they lived
  • We can take our digital recorder to Nana & Grandpa's house & ask them for stories

What else? How can we help our children do this?


Cellista said...

I love this post and I absolutely loved that talk! Family history is of course one of my passions and I'm so excited to get my children involved. My 10yo really is interested in it right now but I'm still trying to figure out just how he can help me with my research. I probably need to back up a few steps.

Here's a link to a family history lapbook that looks interesting.

Also, in the Friend magazine (last October I think? I'll see if I can find the exact link) there were two pages for making a picture pedigree with your children. I always thought it would be fun to make a file folder matching game out of it, although I have yet to pull them out and downsize them for the pages.

Also, here's a great FHE we did once--I drew a pedigree on a large piece of paper, then the boys took turns drawing their ancestors' names out of a jar and had to figure out where they went on the pedigree. We then labelled everyone with "my mother", "my great-grandpa," etc. It was on our kitchen wall for ages and everyone got really familiar with the names.

There are so many great ways to get them involved. I love it that we saw several family sites on our recent trip back east and my kids were interested in them all because we've taught them about their heritage. Next time we need to go to Plymouth, we just couldn't fit it in, but we can trace a couple of lines back to the Mayflower. And standing on the ground your ancestors trod is a neat experience.

Ritsumei said...

Awesome! I'm going to have to do some of those. I think that for some of my near-ancestors, people have put together photo-pedigrees. If I can find one of those it'd be nice for that matching game: no reading needed. I'm also working on putting a "note" up on facebook to see if I can collect any ancestor stories from my relatives. It'd be cool to eventually collect & print them, and send a copy to the Family History Library in Salt Lake. My grandma did that for her Mother, and it's really cool!

nikko said...

This talk struck such a chord in me, too. Suddenly it made so much sense to me why our kids seem to be so technologically inclined and so attracted by electronics. Elder Bednar's talk impressed to me that these are traits put into these children to suit them towards genealogy research in our internet-saturated world.

We are already pretty family-history-minded around here, but this talk made me want to step up our efforts. David is doing some hard core research with the help of a paid researcher in England. He tries to get the boys interested whenever something esp noteworthy comes down the pipe. Another thing that I have loved is having pictures of our ancestors on display in our home. We have two large collage style frames in our dining room with ancestors pictures in them and the words "families are forever" above them. I want to put up more. The kids are always asking who is who!

I also want to put together a display-worthy pedigree chart for the kids. We have our huge 16 generation posters up on the wall in the den (one for me, one for David) but I think it would be neat for all of us to see both sides together with the kids down at the center.

We also try to use stories from our past and our ancestor's past when discussing different principles at FHE, etc.

MissMOE said...

Great post. I think at a young age learning the stories of those that came before them is the start of learning to love family history.


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