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Wednesday, December 10, 2008
4 Creative Family Projects

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By Grace Chen

Finding activities that the entire family can do can present a bit of a challenge. Different age levels and interests can make it more and more difficult to do projects together. Here are some ideas for creative projects that the whole family can enjoy.

  1. Family Tree Mapping - Kids are fascinated by how they fit into the bigger picture, and many parents and grandparents love retelling the stories of previous years. A family tree can be a great way to tie all of this together. Get a large piece of poster board or paper to lay your tree out on. You could even draw an outline of a tree if you would like. Now you will want to go through old photo albums, baby books, scrapbooks, etc. to find the names and pictures of family members. Feel free to take any detours down memory lane while researching.

    Don’t forget, if you find that you are missing some members from the family tree, you can use the internet as a resource for this project. Family genealogy sites can be a great place to find additional information, particularly about family members that you are no longer in contact with or have passed away. You might even find that you have a famous person hiding in your family tree somewhere!

  2. Website/Blog - Many people are turning to the internet for creative ideas and information. The internet can be a great way to keep in contact with distant family members, and can also be a great family project.

    Consider creating a family blog or website. Family members can take turns taking pictures, writing stories or biographies, and downloading videos. Make sure to pass out the address to extended friends and family members so that they can keep up with everything you are doing.

  3. Go Green - Many families are going green, both for their own health and for the health of the environment. There are numerous fun and creative projects that you can do as a family. Consider:
    • Starting a compost pile. Kids will enjoy watching to see how long it takes items to decompose, as well as the time outdoors.

    • Recycle. Kids can help with the recycling bins, sorting cans, bottles, jars, paper before taking it to be recycled.

    • Decorate reusable shopping bags. Using cloth shopping bags helps to prevent all of those plastic or paper bags from ending up in a landfill. You can find plain bags at your local craft store and allow everyone to paint their own design on them using fabric paint.

  4. Get Outdoors - Outdoors is a great place to get fresh air and exercise, and there are always plenty of activities that you can do as an entire family. You could consider a bigger project, like planting a family garden or building a tree house. Or try some smaller projects, like planting flowers in pots to line a sidewalk or porch or building birdhouses or birdfeeders to take care of your feathered friends.

The best thing about creative family projects is that they are not limited to the ideas here. You can do nearly anything that you can imagine, just tailor it to the abilities and interests of the different members of your family.

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