Presently, I am studying to become a high school history teacher. In one of my classes, we are working on lesson plans. One of the lesson plans that I created used genealogy. I believe that introducing a genealogy lesson in the classroom will help students to understand that history is not something that is distant. It shows them that their lives connects with history.
I found a great quote in a book that I'm reading called History Comes Home: Family Stories Across the Curriculum that brings this idea home:
"Family history offers a way out of the divisive trap of racializing our identities. The ominous divides of race are bridged by the actual complexity of our collective past, and the great lesson of our histories deliver: in many ways we are similiar [author's emphasis.] Our families and peoples of the world over have worked, struggled, fought through wars and hard times, adjusted to technology, and made it to this place and day. Further, by focusing on ethnic origins, migrations, and pathways, identity is constantly enriched and expanded. All of us come from somewhere. Family tree branch into glorious, bushy complexity, rich with a million stories. And our stories are linked."
Zemelman, Steven, et. al., History Comes Home: Family Stories Across the Curriculum. (York, Maine: Stenhouse Publishers, 2000.) p. 6.
I've skimmed through this book, and it seems good. I will post a review of the book on this site once I finish reading it.