In one of our groups last week we had a great discussion about our family stories. We talked about the stories that are important to our families, like having adventures together, trying new things, celebrating milestones and staying connected across oceans. Sharing these stories are beautiful ways of connecting to our unique family values and each other.
Talking about family stories is also a gorgeous opportunity to connect with our little ones, helping them to shape a sense of self as they see their place in the family story. It is also a great way to use lots of rich language!
One way you could do this is by drawing a family tree together, showing the connections between family members and sharing memories and stories that come to mind as you write down your family members.
Another idea to do as a family could be to use the concept of a tree to draw what is important to your family. You can think about roots as where your family is from, the trunk as the core strengths and skills of the family (e.g. skills of kindness, sharing, looking out for each other), the branches as the hopes, dreams and plans for the future, and the leaves as important people in the family system.
For younger children use the opportunity to get out the crayons and butchers paper for a fun craft activity as well.
Written by Jessie Czaban Child & Family Counsellor at The Shepherd Centre.