This post is one of the ten in Vibrant Homeschooling’s Fabulous Family Movie Nights series. Click here to see the other movies featured and be inspired to plan an interactive learning experience through movies with your family this summer!
I’m so glad to be a part of the Fabulous Family Movie Nights Series! We have a family movie night about once a month and it’s a fun time to just sit and chill with the whole family. Of course for us, everything is about learning and playing (and learning while playing), so it’s also a good time to talk about the movies, read the books, and do some fun activities too. For this series I chose one of my children’s favorite movies, “Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs.” We watch it on a fairly regular basis and it always makes for good conversation.
What you will need for a Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs movie night:
The movie. A must.
Red pom poms
Kitchen tools and play plates
I do recommend reading the book first because that is how the story was originally meant to be told. If you watch the movie first, the kids will always think that the book told the story ‘wrong’.
Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs is a great movie about consequences. It’s a silly story that can be used to show kids that just because something feels good, doesn’t mean that the outcome is going to be good. For little kids, it’s a great way to talk about making good choices and for older kids you can really focus on the consequence side of things and how, if we make an unwise choice, we should do our best to make it right even if the consequence can’t be undone.
Some ideas you can use to start a conversation about the movie:
Flint’s dad told him to stop inventing, but he didn’t was that a good choice? Should Flint’s dad have asked him to stop? Why?
Flint felt successful when his machine was working, how did he feel when the warning signals started?
What kinds of things did Flint ignore to continue his idea of success?
What did Sam learn about herself?
Flint’s dad was always proud of him, but didn’t know how to say it. Do you think that if he had said it from the beginning Flint would have still created the food machine? Why or why not?
The people of Chewandswallow thought that the food weather was amazing, did they think about the consequences it may have?
What kinds of consequences occurred because of Flint’s machine and the weather?
Do you think that food rain would be a good thing? Why or why not?
To go along with the movie we made a fun Spaghetti Sensory bin!
To create it, I simply boiled some spaghetti (someone had gifted us a few bags of spaghetti that we tried, but no one in the family enjoyed.) I added about 1/4 cup of vegetable oil to the water while it was boiling, so that it wouldn’t be sticky while the kids played with it.
After the noodles were done, I rinsed them in cold water so that the kids wouldn’t burn themselves on the hot noodles.
I put the spaghetti in one of our sensory boxes (which happens to be a Rubbermaid box) and topped it with
meatballs red pom poms.
We added in a few pairs of tongs, some forks, a noodle ladle and the dishes from the kids’ toys.
I placed the bin on top of a plastic shower curtain to contain any potential messes and all of the kids played together with it.
A lot of people think that sensory bins can only be used with small children and that preteens wouldn’t be interested, but I have seen the proof many times that the older kids love them too. Plus, it’s a good time for them to build their skills of interacting with little kids for future babysitting adventures.
The kids enjoyed playing together and it was a great respite from all the unpacking we’ve been doing lately. For my littlest one, it was a great chance for her to work on her fine-motor skills and continue to build her language skills even though she didn’t understand the movie.
Here are a few more fun food play ideas:
Create spaghetti and meatballs with some felt and balls!
Do a science experiment to create the best ice cream play dough!
Create some meatless hot dog art and build fine-motor skills squeezing the paint bottle!
Get out some play dough and create some food on these super cute free play dough food mats.
Since each family makes their own determination about which media content is suitable for their individual family members, parents are advised to preview the movie themselves before watching. Some movies may have content not suitable for the youngest audiences. Neither Vibrant Homeschooling or guest authors in the series will be held responsible for content that your family may or may not deem appropriate in these movies.