Roots for Kids, first published in 1989, is based on a twelve-week course the author developed for her fourth-grade class. This is now the 3rd edition of this classic book, with updates reflecting both the recent explosion of interest in genealogy and the changes in how we can now do our family history research. While the book is suitable for teachers seeking to supplement their social studies curriculum with material on family history, it is also a wonderful resource for families looking for a meaningful project to work on together, and for any young person interested in making their first attempt at genealogical research.
Many children are curious about their heritage. They know their parents, and if they are lucky, they know–maybe even live with–one or more grandparents. But the average lower-school child only knows about their living relatives. This book will help them explore their own family history by teaching them the fundamentals of genealogy research and giving them the tools they need to learn more about their ancestors, to uncover the stories and events that make them and their families unique.
The author first takes the young readers through an introduction to genealogy. Then she proceeds to discussions of their families and their parents’ families, teaching them how to ask questions, what documents to look for, how to organize materials, and how to use the internet to conduct research in local, state, national, and international records. It is easier than ever for youngsters to explore genealogy databases and to tap into the online resources of libraries and historical societies without leaving home, and this new 3rd edition contains the most current information on how to access these.
For children who are not yet ready to research in documents and get into the detailed records contained in this book, the author has written a companion title called Roots for Kids: Finding Your Family Stories. This companion book is a great way to start children’s genealogy research by collecting stories about their families.