Mother, daughter using laptop computer

No. 2: Find your roots

If your kids have been planted in front of the tube they might know the show "Who Do You Think You Are?" The genealogy program demonstrates that sleuthing your family's ancestral history can be an emotional adventure and that geography and history aren't boring.

It also reinforces that anyone can do a little family research.
A number of online resources, some of them free, help the budding genealogist get started and make a daunting task seem doable. Many communities have genealogy clubs.
Another way to get to know your family members is to ... talk to them. The nonprofit group StoryCorps encourages people to record interviews with family members to learn more about them and preserve their stories for future generations.

You can hear compelling stories at the StoryCorps website, which is also a guide for anyone who wants to undertake their own project.