Newspaper article Evansville Courier & Press (2007-Current)

Quality Movie Can Launch Family Discussion ; YOUTH RESOURCES

Newspaper article Evansville Courier & Press (2007-Current)

Quality Movie Can Launch Family Discussion ; YOUTH RESOURCES

Article excerpt

Each year Americans spend numerous hours watching movies. We watch movies at home, at the theater, at the drive-in, on laptops, on tablets, on airplanes and even in cars. Some even plan their calendars around midnight releases of their favorite films. Movies are a great source of family entertainment. However, we should be cautious to keep kids a priority when selecting our next flick.

Today, many parents use movies and other forms of media as a way to entertain the kids so they can work on other projects. Movies (and television in general) have become a babysitter of sorts.

Parents should use movie time as an opportunity to spend time with their children rather than a time-filler to keep them occupied.

Family movie nights are a great way to spend time with your children and can open the door to many great conversations and teachable moments.

Tips for a fun family movie night

Set the scene: Turn the living room into a makeshift cinema, allow the younger kids to make their own tickets or move the movie outside and watch under the stars.

Allow the kids to have a say in the movie selection, but also encourage them to watch some classics and even movies that were your favorites when you were young. Focus on movies with a message that will get kids thinking beyond themselves.

Put all else aside: Sit back, relax and enjoy the show. Refrain from checking your cellphone, finishing up household chores and other things that can draw your attention away from the movie.

It's all about the snacks: Popcorn, candy and sodas will make it a night to remember. While healthy snacks are the best choice, kids will have fun drinking from a glass soda bottle or eating freshly popped popcorn.

Take advantage of teachable moments. Movies can open dialogues about bullying, drinking, drugs, sex, body image and many other hot teen topics. …

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