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Recording Family Stories
|Grades||9 – 12|
|Activity Time||Six hour-long sessions, spread over approximately two weeks|
Fredonia, New York
The stories of an older family member can explain family traditions and establish heritage-and they can be cherished possessions that are passed among family members for years to come. Teens can take part in the process of building family histories by recording the stories, or memoirs, of family members. The activity suggests a range of ways to record stories, from writing memoirs to composing an alternative artistic representation such as a photographic collage, a series of panels telling a story, a painting, a video, a musical composition, or a sculpture.
In recording family stories, teens practice the art of weaving several different family members' points of view into a significant unified piece, developing their interviewing skills in the process. As participants identify unifying themes in their family interviews and compose their own memoirs, they take on a persona to tell their story.
This activity was modified from the ReadWriteThink lesson plan "Family Memoir: Getting Acquainted with Generations Before Us."