Wasting Time Watching Too Many Movies?

“What shall I get Dad for his birthday?” I asked, and my girls giggled, and with one voice said, “Flowers… chocolates… promises you don’t intend to keep…””Flowers… chocolates… promises you don’t intend to keep…? Where’s that quote from?”

“Beauty and the Beast!”


Of course! Why didn’t I recognise this quote? Beauty and the Beast is Imogen and Charlotte’s number one favourite movie of all time. They’ve watched it a million times.


Sometimes I say, “How can you possibly want to see that movie again? Surely you’re fed up with it by now?” My young adult daughters shake their heads and settle down to enjoy it yet again.


Should I be worried? Surely Imogen and Charlotte should have outgrown this Disney movie by now? What is the attraction? Perhaps my daughters are wasting too much time sitting in front of the screen.


Except they don’t spend all their time watching movies. Sometimes Charlotte works on animations of her own. She’s doing a Bachelor of Arts degree in Digital Design. She’d like to design computer games. And Imogen can often be found at her computer, rewriting fairy tales. Apparently, these kinds of novels are very popular. Or she might be at the piano singing Disney songs. You see, she has dreams of becoming a successful author and online musician. It seems, movies can inspire all kinds of creativity.


They can also be a wonderful source of useful quotes.


It’s my eldest daughter Felicity’s birthday in a few weeks’ time. What shall I buy her? I know: “Flowers… chocolates… promises… (I)… don’t intend to keep…”!



In this week’s podcast:


I talk about movies:

  • Are movies educational?
  • If a child watches lots of movies, won’t she be missing out on other things?
  • Can we tempt our kids away from the screen?
  • And how can we turn movies into notes for our homeschool records book?


  • Can we use websites designed for traditional homeschooling/schooling in an unschooly way?
  • Is there such a thing as too many resources?
  • I share a story about kids and joy.
  • Should I be embarrassed by my early podcasts which are far from perfect?
  • Should I get upset when I think about my mothering mistakes?

I also share lots of resources.

Show Notes

Lady Susan by Jane Austen

Marrying Mr Darcy

Clear Shakespeare: The read-along Shakespeare podcast. A word-by-word guide through the plays for students, readers, and performers.

Film Education Animation
Unreal Engine
Animate It!

Blog posts
Everything is Educational Even Disney Princesses
How to Plan the Next Term’s School Work in Half an Hour
Approaching Classic Novels the Other Way Around
How Younger Siblings Learn By Listening In

24: Boy Stories
21: Being Honest: Talking About Mistakes and Perfection
62: Young Adult Unschoolers, Dreams, Love and Marriage

My Pinterest Resource Boards

Follow Sue’s board Shakespeare on Pinterest.

Follow Sue’s board Jane Austen on Pinterest.

Podcast Music
60’s Quiz Show by Podington Bear(CC BY-NC 3.0)

Images: My daughter Sophie took these photos of younger sister, Gemma-Rose, and a few favourite movies. You can find Sophie and her photos on Instagram.


You can find my Stories of an Unschooling Family podcast on

Thank you for listening to this week’s podcast. If you’d like to stop by and say hello, please do! Perhaps you can share your family’s favourite movie and quote.

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  1. Reply

    That quote made me laugh. Yes we also watch a lot of movies – and quote them all over. The Pirate is the born impersonator, for the momnet he's doing Flash, the sloth fro Zootroplis. It makse us all laugh so hard. It can become somewhat of a competition to find the most apt quote as ansver to every question.

    1. Reply

      PS. What wonderful photos of Gemma-Rose

    2. Reply


      I hadn't heard of Zootropolis until you mentioned it. I think it's also known as Zootopia in some countries. I did some research and found out this movie was released in Australian cinemas a few days ago. Perhaps we can see it as a family during the Easter school holidays. I shall watch out for Sloth!

      I'm glad you like the photos. I asked Sophie if she could help me by taking some appropriate photos for this post. She got together with Gemma-Rose and a few movies, and this is what she produced!

    3. Reply

      Yes, Zootropia and Zootropolis is the same movie. Confusing with two similar names for the same movie 😉 We saw it as it was released in Denmark. We have a good cinema near by. It is small, but jhas the equipment needed to get movies on the release day. We often go there, as it is a great experience. One of the voluntary workers there is a voice actor (?). He was the three pigs and the gingerbread man in Shrek, and when we saw it there, he told us about his precious wine gum buttons – So funny to hear.
      Yes do go and see Zootopi/toroplis Is't good. We're going to watch Frozen – mot in the cinema, but at home. I never made it and the Owlets want me to watch it with them.

    4. Reply


      Wouldn't it be fun to be a voice actor? The actors who do all the characters' voices for animated films must have a great time recording together.

      I'm certainly looking forward to seeing Zootropia/Zootropolis after reading your recommendation. And I can recommend Frozen. We saw that movie in the cinema but bought the DVD copy too. Have you seen Megamind? That's another of our family favourites.

      "…the Owlets want me to watch it with them." There is something very special about sharing our favourite movies with other people. I hope you enjoy Frozen!

  2. Reply

    I haven't listened to the podcast yet. But I just had to say that Beauty and the Beast is still one of my all-time favorite animated Disney movies. I have watched it I don't know how many times! 🙂

    1. Reply


      Another Beauty and the Beast fan! Yes, it's a great animated movie. My girls can't wait for the live action version to be released. I'm not sure what stage this production is at, but it seems we'll have to wait until 2017 to see it. We've been discussing the casting and musing over such things as how will someone act the part of a tea cup or wardrobe. Lots of fun!

  3. Reply

    We are a movie-loving family and I have found them to be a great way to bond, to discuss themes, and to talk about the character's choices and how we would make the same decision or not. This is the first year I've embraced our love of movies and TV without guilt and we are all happier because of it.

    1. Reply


      Oh yes, watching movies also bonds us together as a family! There is something special about sharing books, but maybe it's the same with movies. I love how we can revisit them at any momement. Someone says, "Do you remember…" or quotes a few favourite lines and then we're all laughing or discussing and enjoying the movie all over again. Some of them, like Cinderella (the Branagh version), reinforce what we feel is important in life. Our conversation turned to virtues this morning and we found ourselves discussing Cinderella all over again. Have courage and be kind. Such a good message.

      Maybe we feel guilty about movies because so many people tell us sitting in front of a screen is a passive and alone tyoe activity. Well, those people have never seen us watch a movie together! Lots of interaction and discussion and fun!

      Amy, I'm so glad you stopped by!

  4. Reply

    My daughter loves watching movies and T.V series, she makes full use of our Netflix subscription. She has sometimes followed up with reading a book series or researching a topic further.
    My son is more of a youtube and documentary fan .
    We love having family movie nights and going to the cinema as well.

    We have a niece who is in year 10 at the local public school, she was telling us this weekend about the movies that she has watched for science . The Martian, wasn't so surprising to me,but I was surprised at World War Z, to learn about pandemics!!

    1. Reply


      I love direct streaming movie websites. They're so much more convenient than driving into town to borrow a movie when we suddenly want to watch something. We've tried Stan and Quickflix, but we haven't looked at Netflix. Perhaps we should!

      Yes, it seems schools are using movies as learning tools too. I have to admit I haven't seen World War Z. I don't even know anything about it… I just did some research. Not a typical choice for school! And there's a book. I'd be tempted to read it after watching the movie, though I'm not sure horror movies are my thing.

      It's funny how going to the cinema is still very popular even though we can now wait and buy the movie as a DVD and watch it at home. I guess there's nothing quite like seeing a movie on the big screen.

      I've enjoyed chatting about movies. Thank you for stopping by!

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