I have written about Family Movie Night plenty of times on my site. It’s something that I feel strongly about. With my children growing up so quickly I feel like I need to have as many cherished memories as I can with them before they spread their wings and take flight. My daughter is a Freshman in high school now. How in the world did that happen? It seems like only yesterday I was dropping her off for her first day of Pre-K. Sigh…
Family Movie Night has presented it’s own challenges. As the children get older they have developed their own preferences as to what kinds of movies they want to watch. My son is usually easy to please. He just goes with the flow and it OK with what everyone else decides on. Our daughter on the other hand has her own ideas on what kinds of movies she wants to watch. Now that she’s 14 she wants us to show PG-13 movies. Since our son is not yet 12 I won’t do that. Plus I would rather keep our family movies rated G – PG, at least for a little while longer.
One of our personal type of of a family movie are any of the Disney classics. Then again, pretty much ever film Disney has released is a classic.
On September 20, 2011, Disney will be releasing one of my all time favorites to DVD, Blu-ray and Digital Download – Dumbo. Can you believe that Dumbo is going to be celebrating it’s 70th anniversary this year. WOW! I never realized Dumbo has been around that long. It’s just as relevant and enjoyable today as it was back then.
It’s fun to give your Family Movie Night a “theme”. I’m not suggesting that you go out and decorate your home in honor of the movie you are watching (although that would be fun). I was thinking more along the lines of a movie related meal or snack. If you can find some movie related games and activities to play before watching the movie that would be a lot of fun too.
Family Movie Nights give you the opportunity to put on your “thinking caps” and get as creative as possible. The whole idea of Family Movie Night is to have fun and create memories with your family. Ten or twenty years from now your children might not remember specifically all the movies they watched during Family Movie Night, but I guarantee they will remember the good times. They will remember things like Daddy acting like an elephant or the delicious Circus Peanut Popcorn mom made.
Whenever my family does something fun together my husband and I always make it a point of asking our kids what was their favorite part of what we did or saw? We also ask what their least favorite things was. We feel it’s a great way to open up the lines of communication and create a dialogue with our children. Even thought they are older now they still enjoy providing us feedback on their thoughts about the thing we do. We ask similar questions after we’ve watched a movie together.
You could certainly come up with some interesting questions to either segue into the movie Dumbo, or something to discuss after the movie. I think a hot topic to discuss would be diversity. I know that seems like a rather odd thing to relate to the movie Dumbo, but when you think about it, a lot of the movie’s theme is about diversity. Dumbo being small with big ears (really big ears!) makes him a lot different then the other elephants in the circus. The circus elephants put poor little Dumbo down and make him feel like an outcast just because he’s a bit different. Big ears or not, Dumbo is still an elephant just like the rest of them. He has a trunk, four legs, a small tail and he loves to eat peanuts just like them. Just as animals come in all different shapes, sizes and things that make them a bit “different”, so do people. We all come in different shapes, sizes, colors, backgrounds and many of us are a bit “different” in a way too. Some people have big ears, some have big noses, and some people have physical deformities. It’s all about diversity. Diversity is a part of life. I personally welcome diversity. I think our world would be very boring if we all looked alike, talked alike and did things alike.
Even though diversity might be hard for your youngest family members to truly understand, you can still make it a point of telling them how everyone is different and that is perfectly OK and acceptable.
In honor of the 70th anniversary and re-release of Dumbo, Disney has a special activity and recipe page that you can download for free to help you create the ideal Family Movie Night featuring Dumbo. You will need an Adobe Reader to open up the .PDF file. If you don’t already have one installed on your computer you can download a free version on Adobe.com.
Here is the download link: www.Scholastic.com/Parents/Play/Printables/Dumbo.htm.
HURRY! This link expires on September 25, 2011.
Does your family have a Family Movie Night? What kinds of movies does your family like to watch together? Do you create special snacks and dishes pertaining to the movie? Do you create activities based on the movie’s theme? I would love to hear from my readers the ways in which they make their Family Movie Night special. Please feel free to comment and let me know.
*I was asked by Disney to post about this information. This is a compensated post. The opinions expressed are my own.