Source: Indys Child Parenting Magazine

Sharing Stories and Memories as a Family
New project begins at the Children's Museum: Stories from Our Community

by Mary Rizk

September 01, 2012

The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis recently opened Stories from Our Community, a new project dedicated to the art of story-telling that encourages memory-sharing among families. Museum visitors are invited to listen to stories provided by professional story-tellers, project advisors, and museum visitors.

To celebrate the debut of this new project, The Museum’s Family Programs department is working with families to create their own family trees to encourage story-sharing among family members. You can create a family tree of your own at home.

Make your very own family tree

You will need:

• Tree colored construction paper

• Empty paper towel roll

• 2 popsicle sticks

• Glue

• Family pictures

• Marker or pencil

• Scissors (be sure to assist younger family members in cutting)

Start by having your child lay their arm out, fingers spread, on a brown piece of construction paper. Trace from their elbow to the tips of their fingers, making sure you trace through all fingers (if the child’s arm is too small, ask if they would like to help trace your own arm). Cut out the trace.

Using different colored construction paper cut out leaf shapes making sure the leaves are large enough to glue a picture and write a name on them.

Form an X with the popsicle sticks and glue them together to serve as the base of the tree. Use an empty paper towel roll to glue the traced arm cut out to the tree base (finger part up to serve as branches for your tree) and then glue to the base.

Once the tree is done, go through your family together and write each member’s name and attach their picture to a leaf. See how many family members your child can remember on their own, and tell stories about each member as you go.

Attach the leaves to the finger part of the tree (the branches) and watch as your tree fills with your loved ones. You can use glue or a hole punch and string to attach the leaves to the branches.