01 August 2013

Enhanced movie experience

Not all children's animated films are equally good.  In fact, there's a great chance that any given film in that genre will be painfully bad.  Fortunately, any film can be improved by the theater experience.  Even if that theater is the infamously sticky-floored local $1 theater.  Another film enhancer is the magical quality called low expectations.

I recently saw Epic and The Croods and truly enjoyed both because I was able to catch them in the theater and because I expected them to be tolerable, at best.  What I didn't realize was how much I would appreciate being able to discuss the film with the boys.  They are able to grasp character arc, understand the differences between setting, theme, and plot, and appreciate conflict in storyline.  This development milestone may be better than when their first words, being potty trained, and the first day of preschool all rolled into one!

Following are photos of the boys and their recently completed 1st and 4th grade math workbooks to show that (1) I am a complete liar when I say that I'm not a workbook mom (well, I may have lied about not using worksheets, but I'm not pushy about it and I only use them during the summer) and (2) the elements of story aren't miraculously learned by osmosis, they are taught children with careful and direct lessons:

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