How to Make a Family Tree: Tips & Ideas for Creating Family Trees of All Shapes & Sizes

How to Make a Family Tree: Tips & Ideas for Creating Family Trees of All Shapes & Sizes
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Why Make a Family Tree?

Preserving family history is a good way to keep a record of your ancestors. It is also a good way to teach your children about the people that they came from. Family histories can stem as many generations as can be traced and can expand on the cultural background of any family.

The best way to start keeping a family history is through creating a family tree. With family trees, people can list the names, birth places and deaths as well as marriages and children that come from each couple. The collection of information that is gathered on each family member can keep the future family members informed about their own genetic histories. Here we are going to go over the basic step to learn how to make a family tree.

For more information on other ways a family tree can be done, check out Learn How to Make a Photo Family Tree and Family Tree for ESL.

Starting Your Family Tree

There are a few basic steps that you will need to take in order to start a family tree. The first step is start out writing down all the basic information, beginning with your starting point. The starting point will depend on which person you will be the start of the tree. For example, if you have a child or children you would make them the starting point. If you do not have any offspring then you would make yourself the starting point.

From the starting point you would then record the information of birth, birth location and parents. An example of this can be seen in the image at the left. Click on the image to get a larger view. In looking at how to make a family tree, it is easier to start with a list of the information rather than to start filing out a family tree form. Gather the information, then start on the form in order to keep the tree looking neat and well put together.

Choosing a Family Tree Style


One you have gathered all of your information, going back as far as you can go research wise the next step is to decided on a family tree style. There are two main styles that are utilized to present family tree information. The first style resembles an actual tree.

The tree style starts with the trunk being the place of your starting point with the branches being the areas where other family members are listed. An example of this can be seen in the image to the left.

The second style that can be used is a basic grid one. This style begins with your starting point at the left


with added family members branching out towards the right of the page. An example of this style can be seen in the image to the right. Click on the image for a larger view.

These are the two basic styles that are primarily used when creating a family tree. In making your way through the process of how to make a family tree, the style that you choose is entirely up to you.