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Cultural Awareness

Teaching Tools, Strategies, and Resources, continued

Creating Your Own Cultural Genogram

Jean Gilbert, PhD
adapted with permission from Hardy & Laszloffy, (1995)

=The U.S. is full of people from many different countries and cultures. This exercise encourages participants to take a look at the culture or cultures that have influenced them. This exercise was developed in 1995 by Hardy and Laszloffy to increase people’s awareness of how they have been influenced by culture.

Looking at how culture has influenced you can help you be more sensitive to the way culture has shaped others. After you complete your own personal genogram and the questions relating to it, we’ll take the opportunity to compare notes in a group discussion. However, you need only share what you feel comfortable sharing!


What you will need in order to complete this exercise: graph paper and colored pencils. When you have finished the exercise, you may want to share it with your family. They may be able to help you add to it if you like. In any case, it will make for a lively and informative family discussion!

Although many genograms go back for several generations, the one you will complete today will just go back to your grandparents, that is, your mother’s and father’s mother and father and will include your parents’ generation (and aunts and uncles) and your own generation with all your brothers and sisters and their spouses. Clearly, you have a lot more relatives than just this three-generation genogram, but this is all we have time for today!


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