“There have been great societies that did not use the wheel, but there have been no societies that did not tell stories.” - Ursula Le Guin
As parents you are your child's first and most important teacher. Students are with us for several hours, five days a week, but you have them forever and you teach them the lifelong lessons that will make them the adults they will become.
Now that mine is the oldest generation in my immediate family, I recognize the importance of keeping our family history alive through the stories I share with my children and grandchildren. If I don't take the opportunity to teach them who they are; where they came from, how can they know who they are? With our rich and varied family histories these are lessons that can only be taught by families themselves. These lessons can come during a dinner conversation, a walk, a drive or as bedtime stories, but the life lessons that they share go well beyond anything they will learn in school that day. What was your life like as a child? Where did you live? Who lived in your home as you grew up? What was important to you? What did you want to be when you grew up? What do you do now? Do you like your job? What is important to you now?
What Kids Learn From Hearing Family Stories goes beyond carrying on family traditions and history, but also allows your children to gain a sense of wellbeing and connectedness that comes from the act of storytelling itself. Think back to when you were a child, listening to the stories of your parents or grandparents. Those lessons carry sweet memories, of the telling and the stories told. Take some time this week to share your family stories with your child.
If you should find it challenging to share all of these things with your child, pick just one and begin with that - Story Arts has a list of questions that you could consider.
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