On Wednesday of this week, my genealogical library reopened, and since I am the Wednesday volunteer for the library, I was there! I decided to try something different, since we usually don’t get people showing up early in the library and our monthly meetings don’t start until October. I decided to show a Webinar in the morning. A lot of the Webinars from Legacy Family Tree are offered on Wednesdays but those are usually around 11 am Arizona time. I wanted something earlier and lucky for our library a member had donated 5 different Webinar CD’s. Since there would be four Wednesdays in September, I planned on showing four of the 5 Webinars. Unfortunately, I had to cancelled the last week viewing because I won’t be there and I wanted to make it easier for my replacement, I decided not to show one that week. If she wants to great, if not that is great too.
Anyway, the first Webinar that we viewed was about finding female ancestors. The nice thing about the CD’s is that they include a handout. The four page handout was basically an outline of the PowerPoint, but included links and it is a lot easier than trying to write all this down while viewing. For myself, I find if I can just sit and listen and glance at the handout I absorb so much more than if I am trying to writing stuff down. I just don’t absorb anything because I am busy trying to write everything down.
Another good thing about these free Webinars that Legacy offers is that they allow you to watch them the following week after the original airing for free. They do have additional viewings that are free all the time. Therefore, you can view the live viewing and be eligible for free prizes and then when the viewing is turned on free the following week, watch again and this time, pause to write notes.
Learning and relearning is a great way to become a better researcher in looking for your ancestors. I find that we get stuck doing the same stuff all the time and then wonder why we get the same results all the time. We are creatures of habit and we use what is familiar. I like learning and relearning new ways of doing things and trying them. Even if you only learn one new trick or method, it might be the thing you need to break through your brick wall.
Don’t forget that on YouTube there are a lot of cool videos too. What I like about YouTube is that they are usually shorter than the Webinars which are at least 1 hour long while the videos are as short as a couple minutes and maybe as long as 20 minutes. Try setting aside 20 minutes a week to find a video on learning something dealing with genealogy. Are we really too busy to find 20 minutes a week? You might think you are, but the next time you are waiting for your food on the stove or in the oven to finish cooking in 20 minutes, fill the time with watching a video!
Plus, a lot of genealogy websites have free learning tool too, even paid sites like Ancestry.com offers free tutorials. I like those and the ones on FamilySearch.org. But look around and you will be surprise at what you find! So when you get frustrated because you are not expanding your family, try expanding your knowledge!
Education is a continual process! Enjoy learning.