Saturday, March 1, 2014

Movies Based on Literature

It is true without fail, well at least in my opinion, that the book is always better than the movie. There are so many details in a book that make it difficult to incorporate it all into a movie that is only an hour or two long. Despite this, I think there is a great value in allowing children to view these kinds of movies, after reading the book if they are able to. What about children with learning challenges or dyslexia? Movies allow them to experience at least part of the joy of a good literary piece. Plays based on books are also an excellent way to help children experience literature.

For children that have read the book it may help to engage them in the story even more and help with analytical thinking skills. They can compare and contrast the differences between the book and the movie adaption. They can see how their interpretation or view point of the book, may be different than the film makers.

As you know, in my homeschool I have two students. Z~girl is an avid reader that reads constantly and goes through books rapidly. My son has taken many years to be able to read and he reads slowly. Often during the whole process of figuring out what each word says, the story's meaning can get lost along the way. Yet he very much enjoys a good story and likes to be read to.

 Movies are one way that I am able to bring enjoyment to both of my children and let my son enjoy some of the same stories his sister loves. It is an activity that they can both do together and benefit from. My son is still learning about literature, and watching it on the TV (Netflix or videos from the library) is a way he can experience it at his own cognitive level. When we watch a movie he constantly is asking questions about the characters and the plot trying to understand what is going on. (which most of the time is a good thing!)

Here is a list of movies, based on books that I have compiled that a person can find on Netflix. The first one I am going to recommend is Alabama Moon by Watt Key which is a newer book. If you would like to read a review for this particular book there is one at There are also literature-based word lists for many classic books to go along with the books and movie!

Lord of the Rings trilogy
Ann of Green Gables
Gone with the Wind
To Kill a Mockingbird
The Wizard of Oz
Lassie Come Home
Great Expectations
Sense and Sensibility
The Black Stallion
The Secret Garden
Where the Red Fern Grows

Of course this is just a list of a dozen possibilities and there are many more available on Netflix. Also, do not forget about your public library. I know there are many movies in our library that are based on literature.

Do you use movies based on books in your homeschool? What are some of your family's favorite movies?

1 comment:

  1. My son it taking a co-op class that is called Movies as Literature. They are doing Friendly Persuasion, The Music Man and if they have time Chariots of Fire. Not the same as movies based on literature but he is enjoying it.

    We try to read the book before we watch the movie version. Sometimes that is the best motivation to finish a book when you have a reluctant reader like mine.