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3 Ways To Choose A Bedtime Movie

Author imageThe Mattress Warehouse

Have your children ever reminded you of Alvin from the Alvin and the Chipmunks movies? Mischievous beyond belief all in the name of fun? Or perhaps they have mean-girled a friend like the Bratz have. Don’t feel too bad about it. While kids pick up all sorts of things from movies, they are still young enough to put the bad habits down.

Do your children pull tricks like Alvin and the Chipmunks? Credit: Fox 200 pictures, Regency Enterprises.

Contrarily, they also pick up many positive messages just as quickly. The key is finding the right movies to teach the proper lessons. As you will see below, once you understand a little bit about how children pick up lessons from movies, you can start ensuring they learn the right lessons.

Choosing a Bedtime Movie

While many movies carry the same underlying messages, not everyone will get the point across. When choosing bedtime movies for kids, you must always take their age into account. Their age is most often tied to their developmental stage, and so plays a role in determining how they learn best. You can also reinforce the lessons demonstrated in a movie by discussing what happened and asking them questions about it.

Here is a quick age-by-age guide to choosing movies for kids:

1. Age 2 to 7

Keep it simple. Easy to follow storylines and an easily identifiable main idea is the way to go. Actions supporting the central idea makes a bedtime movie easy to follow for kids.

The more obvious the better. If you were to print out the lesson the movie is teaching, it would be written in big, bold letters. The younger they are, the more blatant they need it to be.

Cars is always a hit under the young ones. Credit: Walt Disney Pictures, Pixar Animation Studios.

Choose movies with human characters. Animated movies featuring animals may be a crowd favourite, however, children empathise best with human characters.

Consider the following movies for kids between the age of two and seven:

  • Finding Nemo
  • A Bug’s Life
  • Cars
  • The Jungle Book
  • Ice Age

2. Age 8 to 10

Keeping it simple is still best. Younger primary school-age kids still need an easy to comprehend cause-and-effect sequence. Clear links between motivation, actions and consequences are what will get the message across.

Choose something funny. The best bedtime movies for kids at this age are the ones that make them laugh. Having something funny to chuckle at will keep them interested while their receptive brains absorb all the good messages.

Soar the skies with How To Train Your Dragon. Credit: Dreamworks Animation.

Focus on the positive. Choose movies that provide and emphasize positive examples of the lesson, instead of providing negative examples. For example, if you want them to learn about honesty, pick a movie that continuously shows the rewards of honesty.

Consider the following movies for kids between the age of eight and nine:

  • How to Train Your Dragon
  • The Incredibles
  • Big Hero 6
  • Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory
  • Wreck-it Ralph

3. Age 11 and Older

Complexity is the new simple. At this age, your tween or teen is able to understand and interpret plots and subplots. As children get older, they will enjoy figuring out more complex themes in their effort to understand what the night’s bedtime movie is trying to portray.

Seek out relatable characters. You will quickly notice a higher level of engagement when they see bits of themselves in the characters on screen.
Forget being obvious. Having the main lessons trumpeted at them might work for younger kids.

Go on an adventure with your tweens in Jurassic World. Credit: Legendary Pictures, Amblin Entertainment, The Kennedy Marshall Company, Universal Pictures.

However, older kids will reject any movie that looks like it is blatantly trying to teach them a lesson. Go for something more complex and relatable to their age group. Indiana Jones, a loner learning to value teamwork, is a good example of the complexity they desire.

Consider the following movies for kids that are ten or older:

  • Back to the Future
  • Jurassic World
  • The Parent Trap
  • Cheaper by the Dozen
  • Mrs. Doubtfire

After The Movie

Once the bedtime movie is over, the credits have rolled and you are all snacked-out, your eyes will likely be drooping shut. The best way to end an evening of fun and laughter is to drop into bed, roll over and not move until morning comes.

With a comfort rating of 3, the Sealy Posturepedic Alon Medium is the best bed for the job. Accommodating a variety of sleeping styles, from back to side sleepers, this mattress will lull even the fussiest of young sleepers into dreamland.

In The End

The movie industry provides a plethora of character-building movies for kids. Bedtime movies for kids have come so far that children’s movies these days can still be enjoyed by a variety of ages.

Many parents have found themselves laughing along despite themselves. Even teenagers are unable to rid themselves of an life-long Disney obsession. Plenty of movies for kids teach lessons about honesty, gratitude and humility hidden in their story lines. So, if you are looking to build empathy in your kids, regardless of their age, feast yourself in the variety of bedtime movie choices.

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