Get Your Child Reading with Netflix

“Get Your Child Reading with Netflix” is certainly an odd title. After all, Netflix is used for streaming movies and television series. Where does the reading come in? This is where it gets interesting.

As you know, Netflix began as a DVD-by-mail service. To this day, almost 20 years after it was founded, it still offers DVD-by-mail. If you already use streaming services from Netflix, you may be aware of some of its educational offerings with documentaries and movies available for use in your school. What many people do not realize is the DVD library of Netflix has a number of movies that are not available through streaming. Many of those movies are titles of books we regularly assign our children to read for school.

If you are still lost, well, here you go. Do you want your child to read more? Consider bringing the book (story) to life with the reward of seeing the movie on the screen after they finish reading the book. If you have already created a list of “reading musts” your child should complete before the school year is over, check and see if some of those titles are available on DVD. Some children may
prefer to just watch the movie, but we all know what is best for them and that is reading the book first.

Although Netflix is fee-based, the minimal expense may be something to consider as an addition to your school. Here is a starting list of some of the more popular titles you may have plans of including on your child’s reading list:

20,000 Leagues Under the Sea 1954 
The Adventures of Robin Hood 1938 
Around the World in 80 Days 1956 
A Tale of Two Cities 1935 
Bridge to Terabithia 2007 
The Diary of Anne Frank 1959 
Johnny Tremain 1957 
Little Women 1933 
The Lord of The Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring 2001 
The Miracle Worker 1962 
Of Mice and Men 1939 
Old Yeller 1957 
Pride and Prejudice 2005 
The Secret Garden 1993 
Shiloh 1996 
Sounder 1972 
Swiss Family Robinson 1960 
Treasure Island 1950 
The Wizard of Oz 1939 
Wuthering Heights 1939

Some of the movies do have later versions, but along with that often comes the need for parental screening. More liberties are often taken with newer versions of books-to-film. Also, just like reading the book (the original), it can be as exciting to see how the first movie interpretation of a story comes
to life.

Do you want to keep the conversation going after they read the book and watch the movie? Use some of these questions for great conversation or a writing exercise:

How was the movie different from the book?
If changes, did it enhance or take away from the story?
Were all of the original characters from the book included in the movie?
Was the movie well cast?
What was your favorite part of the book?
What was your favorite part of the movie?
Would you have directed the movie the same way or differently?

Jennifer Smeltser writes for HomeLife Academy. HomeLife Academy is an official private school serving thousands of home educators. For more of Jennifer's articles, visit the Homeschool Roster.

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