Once upon a time, before having children, it was easy going to the movies. You simply pick a movie you like, and you go and see it. REALLY EASY. Now that you have kids, it requires a lot more thought and planning. A major issue is whether or not your child is ready to go.
My daughter’s first movie ever was when she was 4.5. I just didn’t feel confident taking her any sooner. And, I know a lot of parents who feel the same. So I have put some tips for your child’s first trip to the movies together:
1. Are They Ready?
Do you think your child is ready to sit through a full length movie? Are they going to scream and yell and cry? Are you going to have to remove your child part way through the movie – all things you need to consider before even looking at the movie times. Every child is different, and whilst I might think my 4 year old is the perfect age, others might think their 2 year old is – only you know your child best!
2. Select Your Movie
Obviously you want a child-friendly movie. Something that will keep their attention too – perhaps something with a slower pace. Again, this needs to be tailored to your child’s needs and only you know them best. Make sure you check out the trailer first (YouTube is a good place to start) – as it is a good to get and idea of what the movie will be like.
3. Select The Movie Time
In my personal opinion, movies with children are best seen first thing in the morning. Or at least before lunchtime. Purely because I have found my children to be at their peak then.
4. Don’t Rush
Arrive with enough time to grab a snack before hand, having the full movie experience including popcorn, is so much fun! You don’t want to rush around because you think you might miss the movie, but you also don’t want to be there so early that you’re waiting for too long. Make sure you take your child to the toilet before the movie starts!
Talk to your child – tell them EXACTLY what is happening and what you expect of them. Tell them that we try and not yell or scream during a movie, and show them how to whisper. Then repeat this a thousand times, before and during the movie – because that’s our role as parent. Keep reminding the child of our expectations of them.
6. Go With The Flow
Be prepared to have to leave the cinema. There’s no reason to subject a child to something they don’t want to see – and if for some reason the whole experience isn’t going to plan, then just leave. It really isn’t the end of the world, and will be an experience to learn from. Also, you can leave the movie, chill out in the foyer for a few minutes, and then return – there are no rules on coming and going as long as you still have your ticket!
One amazing movie out in cinemas now is The BFG. This movie is about a young girl, Sophie, who befriends a friendly giant and discovers the wonders, and perils, of the giant world. Directed by Steven Spielberg, this movie is a wonderful remake of the children’s story The BFG by Roald Dahl. You can watch the movie trailer here.
I had the fortune of being invited along to the preview and I was not disappointed. I took a good friend along, who wanted to screen the movie before taking her kids to see it, and she was also not disappointed:
It was a wonderful feeling drifting back to my childhood, when books were like magic portals to another world.. this movie recaptured that feeling for me and I loved seeing it. I can’t wait to take my children to see it, as they are reading the books now
The BFG is, of course, out on DVD now!
Thanks to Disney for making this post possible.