With eight pairs of aunts and uncles on my father’s side, and nine on my mother’s, I sure have a large extended family. Growing up with my cousins in close proximity, I remember fun and chaos all around.
My children aren’t as lucky. Their five pairs of aunts and uncles only have two kids each, giving them a total of just ten cousins – and not all of them in the same zip code. But still, four grandparents plus ten aunts and uncles plus ten cousins, make 24 people who my kids know, love, and are curious about.
So, every time we talk about families and relationships, I always whip out our Family Fun Game, which I created when we were reading The Story About Ping.
This Family Fun Game is just made of laminated photos of our extended family: my parents, my parents-in-law, my sister and her husband, my brothers and their wives, my sister-in-law and her husband, my nieces and nephews, and of course, me, my husband, and my kids. We have lots of fun with it:
- We make one big family tree. It serves as a memory game as my kids group each family unit together.
- We group according to relationship: father-daughter, mother-son, husband-wife, brother-sister, grandfather-grandson, etc.
- We identify relationships, as Little T frequently asks: Who is _____ to you/me? Who is _____ to ______?
- We use the photos as story pieces, and make them walk and talk to each other.
Having these pictures in game piece format enables my children to be familiar with our family, especially those who are not based in the Philippines. Do you think your kids will find this fun and useful too?