We all want our kids to spend less time behind their screens so how can we enjoy a family movie night without sending mixed messages?
These 9 steps can help you make a stay home move night just as full of bonding fun as a trip to the park.
Build the anticipation. Announce to the family there will be a “Family Movie Night next ____day night” at least two days prior to the intended day.
Take recommendations. Ask each person in the family to make at least one movie recommendation until you have at least 4 movies to choose from. Make sure that all the movies in the selection are suitable for everyone in the family.
Assign a theme. Discuss each movie and brainstorm different themes you could have for each movie – this could include different types of snack foods, dress ups or even viewing arrangements.
Get the kids to write each movie and the associated theme ideas down on pieces of paper that can be placed in a bag for random selection.
Make a game out of the selection process – run a competition to identify the person who will be making the movie selection. First one to finish dinner, neatest room for the week, dinner table trivia etc.
Create a movie game. We all know the drinking game where participants take a drink each time a person says “____” or when a certain object appears in a scene – twist it up a bit for kids and include activities such as “everyone stand up when …..” or “everyone clap when….”
On movie night, prepare your theme, snacks and don’t forget drinks. You can search for healthy snacks if you are short on inspiration but my favourites are air popped popcorn, homemade fruit ice blocks and cheese and crackers
Allow for intermission – even when little ones are watching a movie they love, they will regularly break concentration so add planned intermissions as required.
Take the time to review. If it’s not too late and the kids have stayed awake to the end, take the time to discuss the movie when it is finished, ask the kids which part was their favourite and share yours.