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Little Kids and Big Screens

Today I’ll be talking about taking kids out to see a movie.

By
Cherylyn Feierabend,
Episode #043

Hey there! You’re listening to the Mighty Mommy with some quick and dirty tips for practical parenting. Today I’ll be talking about taking kids out to see a movie.

Last weekend my husband and I went on a date. This is something we don’t get to do very often and I’m not sure my husband was thrilled when I said I want to go see the new movie, Enchanted. It is a Disney princess movie after all. I really did want to see it, but part of me was simply screening it for the kids. Well, I did get to see it and I loved it. I decided it’s something my daughter would really enjoy and I didn’t think anything was too scary or objectionable for her. This weekend I’ll be taking her to the movies as part of her birthday celebration. She’ll be turning four soon and she loves going to the movies. I have had a few parents look at me like I’m crazy when I tell them this. Then they ask, “How do you get her to behave?” Well, I do the best I can, but that doesn’t mean it’s perfect. We’ve had our issues. I’ve learned a few things along the way that help and I’m going to share these ideas and some additional suggestions I’ve received from others. Keep in mind that all children are different and you, as a parent, ultimately need to decide when you are ready for the adventure of taking your kids to see the movies on the big screen!

My first tip is to ease into it. While your child might surprise you by sitting through a movie the first time you go, don’t expect it to be that easy. It depends on your child, the movie and everyone’s mood at the time. Of course, if you take a tired, cranky, or hungry child into a movie theater, you can’t expect that child to suddenly be a well-behaved little angel. Make sure you are all in the right mood. If there are going to be complications, you need to be in the right frame of mind to handle them patiently. If mommy or daddy is stressed before you leave, rethink your timing. has detailed information on almost every movie. It can be very helpful when trying to decide what will or won’t be appropriate for your kids. The website is Common Sense Media DOT org.

So, you know what times are good to take the kids the movie, now you need to decide what to go see and where to go see it. If you are like me, you’ll want to preview movies somehow before taking the kids. Ratings are provided as a helpful tool, but shouldn’t be the only way you make your choices. You need to base your choices on your own children’s likes, dislikes, fears, and the values you’ve instilled in them. For example, I will never forget going to see the original Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory. I was five years old. When Augustus Gloop was sucked into the chocolate milk machine, I cried. When Violet Beauregarde turned into a giant blueberry, my mom had to remove me from the theater. I’d become hysterical. The Oompa Loompa song still gives me the creeps. I don’t know if my mom knew that would happen, but I am one of those people who doesn’t like to be scared. My daughter is the same way. She’s easily frightened by certain images. In the new movie I want to see with her, I knew there was going to be a dragon. Now that I’ve seen the movie, I know that it’s within her fear threshold and she can totally handle it. If you can’t view a movie beforehand, check reviews and talk to parents and children who have seen it. Some movie websites will offer some additional insight into movie ratings based on personal reviews of actual people. One website called Common Sense

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