Creating Junior Genealogists with Karen Frisch

In the previous blog post “Storybooks that Introduce Children to Genealogy“, we introduced you to three genealogy books that speak directly to children at various age levels. Here is a book that takes a different approach to help adults get children interested in genealogy.

Karen Frisch is the author of the book “Creating Junior Genealogists.” 

Karen, a genealogist herself, started her family research in the 1980s when she found an old German photo album after her grandfather died. While it was full of pictures of her ancestors, she found it difficult to identify the people in the images. This project inspired her to write her first book “Unlocking The Secrets in Old Photographs“. This book gives readers some handy tips on how to identify ancestors, places and the time frame of old images. Something a lot of us have problems with….

About Creating Junior Genealogists

Creating Junior Genealogists is not actually a children’s book but rather a guidebook for adults that gives them various activities to stimulate a child’s interest in their family’s genealogy.

While Karen was writing this book, she talked to friends and reached out to her local genealogy community to get input on how they talk to children about genealogy. She was surprised by how many people replied and what a variety of ideas they had.

  1. Asking the older relatives questions.
  2. Finding members of local clubs or organizations where their ancestors with similar interests may have been members.
  3. Share photographs of ancestors’ homes, pets, or other historical memorabilia and talk with children about the everyday lives that their ancestors lived.
  4. Expose children to things their ancestors used or owned; jewelry, tools, clothing, etc.
  5. Make a family tree on poster board using printed copies of relatives’ pictures with their names underneath. It will introduce children to their family history and stimulate their curiosity to learn more.
  6. Google names from your family history with hometowns abroad if you know them. It’s always a surprise what unexpected information turns up.
  7. Take your children to local museums that might have a family connection, no matter how slim. A transportation museum might contain vehicles or wagons that are similar to those our ancestors might have used during their lifetime. An exhibit of Victorian clothing shows children firsthand how our ancestors looked and dressed and is an eye-opener for young children.

With the success of her first book, publishing this book wasn’t difficult. Her ideas were hitting the market at just the right time when the Internet was growing with genealogy websites as people were becoming more interested in genealogy research. The books have been well received by the public because they take a fresh look at genealogy research topics that weren’t being widely discussed.

Creating Junior Genealogists is available for purchase on Amazon.com.

About Karen

Karen lives in Rhode Island with her husband and has two adopted daughters.

She is currently working on a work of fiction and a historical children’s coloring book.

You can check her out on her website which contains a complete collection of most of her publications and illustrations.