Thursday, September 17, 2009

New Sunday School Family History Course Materials

Anne Roach
“New Resources for Teaching Family History Classes”
Sat., 29 August 2009, 1:00PM.
Salt Lake Family History Expo

Anne Roach This is the 1st free Family History Consultant Training session of the conference. [If you are not a family history consultant for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, this presentation will probably not interest you.]

Nearly every chair is full. We're in the big hall, so there's probably 800 chairs.

In this session we will look at the new family history course for members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. The Church is in 160 countries, more than half outside the US, 52% non-English.
In Peru, only 100 out of 1000 have personal computers, so FamilySearch must support those without computers.
The new manuals must address needs across the Church.
President Boyd K. Packer Teach True Doctrine:

"True doctrine, understood, changes attitudes and behavior. The study of the doctrines of the gospel will improve behavior quicker than a study of behavior will improve behavior."

Boyd K. Packer
Elder Richard G. Scott Focus on the Spirit:

“This is a spiritual work, a monumental effort of cooperation on both sides of the veil where help is given in both directions.”

Richard G. Scott
What do we teach?
- doctrine,
- basic approach to gathering and recording family information,
- how to provide temple ordinances.
Not in-depth.

Variety of teaching/learning approaches
- self study.
Gordon PAF-is-not-dead Clarke tried teaching from the new manuals. He found self-study is important.
- One-on-one coaching.
- Hands on computer classes (optional).
- Weekly assignments.
- Clarke came up with supplemental handouts.
- Get online with those students without Internet.
- Suggested having ward family history night.
- Can use lessons in other settings: FHE, youth.
Officially, this is a 7-week course. Clarke found 12 were needed for the group he taught.
Instructor's Guide (35804 000) Q. Where are the manuals?
A. Instructors manual sent to wards, available for online order, not yet in all distribution stores. An attendee reported that Ft. Union had some that morning.

[Joseph Smith Building had some last Monday morning so I bought one! ($5.25 I think.) At the Utah Valley PAF User Group Meeting last Saturday someone reported that the Orem Distribution Center receives new shipments Wednesday—was it evening?—so Thursday morning was a good time to check.]
Member's Guide (36795 000) The student manual is the Members Guide.
7 chapters.
Highly visual, like Teach My Gospel.
Appendix has forms.
One was also sent to wards.
Not available yet for order.

Download is available.

[This one is also sporadically available in distribution centers. I got one at the Joseph Smith Building distribution center last week. Last Monday they were out. This is a no-charge item.]
Instructors guide has 3 optional computer workshops.
When teaching, have students read from Members guide
Anne now showing from DVD, clip on incorrect interviewing techniques.
[Who is that actress? Don't I know her?]
Now discussing the clip.
[Hey, there's a guy here shooting some video of us. And a guy with a camera. I know him. He ran the camera for my interview with Lisa Louisa Cooke. He works for The Family History Expos.] Now watching clip of the right…
way to do oral interviews.
The DVD comes with the instructors manual.


It was some of the Q and A exchange that followed that prompted me to add a list of FamilySearch links to my web site. The last part of Anne’s handout is titled “Supplemental Lessons” and has a list of the seven lessons released last November. (See Renee Zamora, “Family History Lesson Series,” Renee’s Genealogy Blog.) Anne’s handout states the “supplemental lessons are available on,” but does not explain how to get to the lessons. Someone in the audience asked where the lessons were. This was followed by…

But why tell you about it when you can read my real-time account?

Q. Where are the supplemental lessons?
A. There is also additional supplemental materials that Brent
Summerhays says is available on the Utah/Idaho rollout site.
[True, but not the location of the supplemental lessons.]
Q. Will we have access to clerk's WiFi for teaching this class?
A. Depends on your stake president.
Q. How do you get to the Utah/Idaho rollout site?
A. register as a Family History Consultant.
[True, that is the web site you go through to get to the Utah/Idaho rollout site, and you can register as a consultant there. But you don’t have to register to get to the Utah/Idaho rollout site and that is not the location of the supplemental lessons.]

Optional PC courses: [I assume this refers to the “New FamilySearch Rollout Exercises.” To get to these exercises,
- login to New FamilySearch
- click on Help Center
- click on Training & Resources (which is only available to consultants)
- notice the second box is labeled “Resources for Consultants and Leaders”
- within this box, click on “New FamilySearch Rollout Exercises”
A new window will open with links to the rollout practice exercises (which are also not the supplemental lessons):]
1. learn how to register on NFS,
2. learn how to get help,
3. learn how to use NFS to search for ancestors,
4. learn how to submit information stored in a program like PAF,
5. learn the icons used in NFS,
6. learn how to delete and correct information,
7. learn how NFS organizes information by individual,
8. learn
how to submit temple ordinances on NFS,
9. learn other temples features in NFS,
10. learn how to work with other contributors, and
11. learn how to help someone else use NFS.

Comment from audience:
35804 is number for Instructors Guide.
Merissa Palmer came out of audience to direct people to NFS help center for training. Click on Training and Resources tab. [But, also not the location of the supplemental lessons.]

The new Sunday School lessons use NFS.
There are 13 video segments on the DVD that comes with the Instructors Guide.

Comment from audience: Additional resources are available on [This is where the supplemental lessons are, but the audience member didn’t mention how to get to them. To get to the supplemental lessons, look under “What’s New.” Click on “Family History Lesson Series provides useful guides.” Or come to my web site and use the list of links I’ve added.]

Best practices:
- Keep class size to 6-8 students,
- prepare audiovisual equipment before hand,
- use TV instead of laptop because of audio and chances for fumbling,
- make class as hands-on as possible,
- provide 1 on 1 help with assignments,
- allow class-time for follow-up,
- share spiritual experiences,
- teach the new direction of NFS in Family History.
Anne gave an example of Christ-like approach to collaboration.

Time is up. She's going to start another clip for those that aren't leaving to another class.

The next Family History Consultant class is “FamilySearch Support: How Can We Help You?” by Russell Webster.
I'm teaching, so I won’t be here to report it.

This article is one in a series of session reports from the recent 2009 Salt Lake City Family History Expo taken from my live tweets of the event. Please see my Tweeting Presentations Policy for further information, including the formatting guidelines I attempt to follow and instructions for correcting errors. Additions are in italics.

1 comment:

  1. We started with this course in our ward last week. We are in the Logan Temple district, so we have NFS, but the lessons (recognizing the varying circumstances around the world) are aimed at the lowest common denominator. The videos are excellent, but the course doesn't give much in the way of specifics for skills that are necessary to use NFS effectively.

    We still need to combine information from the NFS site on-line lessons, as well as from our own experience, to teach such things as correcting information, resolving duplicates, separating records, and searching for people on your tree. Synchronization of your PAF files with the use of a third party program is not addressed at all, but is a big issue for most of the 30-40 people in our ward class.

    I had hoped for more detailed instructional material from the Church, but as it is now, I will continue to need to spend a number of hours for each lesson to prepare to give the class members the information that they need. I am willing to do that, but it seems inefficient for every ward to reinvent the wheel independently.


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