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Movies to Watch with the Family

Teaching the skills that matter most in our brave new world, parenting tips

Do you feel like you are running out of activities to keep your child entertained during the school holidays? Why not get some popcorn and fuzzy blankets for a cosy movie night? A movie night at home is a wonderful opportunity to spend some quality time with your family as well. We have compiled 10 classic English movies that are not only entertaining, but also appropriate for the whole family.

1. The Sound of Music (1965)

This classic is set in Austria, during World War 2. Maria (Julie Andrews) is a nun who is on thin ice with the Reverend Mother. She is then sent to be a governess to naval Captain Von Trapp’s (Christopher Plummer) seven young children. The movie then goes on with Maria showing the young children the joys of song and dance. Besides catchy songs and fun dances, the movie also offers poignant insight into the characters’ experiences with war.

2. Mary Poppins (1964)

Starring Julie Andrews as the titular Mary Poppins, this movie will take your family on a magical adventure through songs, dance and animation. Mary Poppins responds to an advertisement looking for a nanny. She is not the kind of nanny Mr Banks envisioned but she manages to convince him to hire her. What ensues are magical adventures with the children interspersed with musical numbers. This movie will teach your child the importance of family time and the virtue of patience, among many other lessons.

3. Free Willy (1993)

A troubled 12 year old boy forms an unlikely bond with a killer whale after he is abandoned by his mother. The themes (animal cruelty and teenage rebellion) in this movie might be darker than normal, so this choice might be more appropriate for older children. This movie can be used to spark a conversation about the ethics of wild animals being held captive for tourist attractions. The story will also surely tug at the heartstrings, regardless of age.

4. The Wizard of Oz (1939)

Dorothy (Judy Garland), who lives on a farm, gets swept away in a tornado and lands in a strange town with peculiar citizens. She then runs into Scarecrow, Lion and Tin Man. as they make their way to see the wizard together, they face numerous challenges along the way. The themes of friendship, perseverance and courage are prominent throughout the movie, and your child will definitely pick up some valuable life lessons.

5. Air Bud (1997)

An adorable runaway Golden Retriever crosses paths with Josh while Josh is playing basketball. Josh then discovers that this dog has the strange ability to play basketball and decides to adopt him. Josh faces some issues in school and learns to overcome the challenges with his new best friend by his side. This heartwarming movie will definitely teach your child about the importance of friendship and helping the ones who have helped you. Plus, who can resist the fluffy and adorable four-legged basketball star?

6. Coco (2017)

Miguel is passionate about music but unable to enjoy it as his great-great-grandmother has put a ban on music in their household. When he is suddenly transported to the Land of the Dead, he seizes the opportunity to get his great-great-grandfather’s help to reverse the music ban. What ensues is a journey of learning how to forgive and being unafraid to seize the moment. The importance of family is a very prominent theme throughout the movie as well.

7. Moana (2016)

Moana is getting ready to be the chief of Motunui when a blight runs through the island. After experiencing a shipwreck, she learns the truth about the island from her grandmother. What follows is an adventure and lesson in the virtue of patience and how diverse our world is. This movie is also a wonderful introduction to Polynesian culture as well.

8. Over The Moon (2020)

The adventurous main character, Fei Fei, builds a rocket ship to travel to the moon, after learning of the legend of the Moon Goddess. She succeeds and makes it to the moon, where she then participates in a competition to search for a gift for the Moon Goddess. This animated movie is a wonderful representation of the mid-autumn festival and offers an insight into the traditions observed and practised during the festival. It is also a lesson on how to move on from your past.

9. Akeelah and the Bee (2006)

Akeelah is an 11 year old student who does not have an easy family life. She is a spelling enthusiast but does not show much interest or enthusiasm for academics, until she decides to participate in the national Spelling Bee competition. The challenges she faces along the way displays the courage and determination she possesses to overcome them. The movie also teaches viewers that it takes effort to achieve success.

10. Encanto (2021)

A magical, sentient house has belonged to the Madrigal family for the past 50 years. Every member of the family is gifted with a magical ability when they turn 5, except for main character Mirabel. She feels left out when witnessing her siblings and relatives flaunting their magical powers. However, she finds out she was destined for even more than she could ever imagine. From this vivid and colourful animation, your child will learn that everyone is unique and has their own strengths. It is a wonderful glimpse into the rich history of Columbia as well.

The movies featured in this article all contain valuable life lessons that will benefit your child. They could also be a source of inspiration for creative plots and character development for your child’s composition writing.

We hope you will enjoy the movies we have listed in this article!



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