How To: Make Your Own Family Tree With Your Kids

A hands-on approach to learning.

by Parents and Kids | Tue, March 06, 2018

By Connor Bell

For many of us, living far away from our families can be tough. We don’t get to see the grandparents or aunts, uncles or cousins very often, and we can feel like we’re missing out on valuable family time which makes it all the more important that our kids grow up learning about their family and their heritage. Creating a family tree to display in your home is not only a teachable moment but also a great hands-on activity for the whole family.

What you will need

Family Tree

• Tree template or cut out

• 2 pieces of construction paper or cardstock (the bigger the better) – one for the tree and one for the background* different colored paper is recommended

• Glue

• Stamp pads (multiple colors if you can find them in green, red, orange or brown)

• Photos of individual family members

• Small circle template (to help cut out perfectly round photos)

• Scissors

• Permanent marker


1. Cut out your tree shape from a template or your own drawing (if you’re artistically inclined) using one piece of cardstock.

2. Glue the tree to your lighter colored piece of cardstock and make sure there is enough room to add leaves and photos around the branches.

3. Work with the kids to pick the perfect family photos for each family member. Print the photos ensuring they are large enough to fill the circle template for your tree.

4. Use the circle template to trace a circle around each photo. Help to cut out the circles or have the kiddos practice their motor skills and cut themselves.

5. Have your child play and practice arranging the photos around the tree. Remember that kids and siblings should be placed near to their parents’ photos.

6. Once you have decided on the layout of photos, glue each photo to the branches of the tree.

7. Using the colored stamp pads, have your child(ren) use their fingers to create leaves around the tree. Place their finger or thumb in the ink pad and stamp leaves around the photos and the branches. If you have more than one child doing this activity, assign each one a different color so you do not have to worry about mixed colors or washing hands between ink pads.

8. Add the names of each family member beneath or above the pictures. You can use their first names or their family title (aunt, cousin, great grandmother, etc).

9. Add a title to your project and allow the kids to decorate the lettering (ie. The Bell Family Tree).

10. Place inside a frame and display for all to see!