Tuesday, April 3, 2012

The whole world in our family room

            We don’t watch television.  There are many reasons why.  Most of all, though we just find the vast majority of programming to be incredibly worldly and shockingly immoral.  Even the commercials, or should I say, especially the commercials are offensive.  

            There is one kind of programming I do like though.  I love documentaries.  So, I decided to start adding some to our school curriculum.  A month or so ago we watched an extremely informative movie all about telescopes.  It went along perfectly with the astronomy unit we had been working on all year.  

Then the other night, the kids really wanted to watch a movie but it was getting close to bedtime and we only had time for something short so we decided to check out what educational options Netflix had to offer on streaming.  We all agreed on “The Riddle of the Sphinx” and ended up learning a lot about ancient Egyptian history, beliefs, and culture and even some things about geology and archeology and art.  

This week, I am super excited because I borrowed a documentary from the library entitled, “Jesus and the Shroud of Turin”.  I watched a show about the Shroud of Turin years ago and was fascinated by it.  I thought it would be perfect for Holy Week and, though I could not find the exact program I saw before, the one I did find looks very promising.  

Documentaries are such a wonderful resource for learning and they make the world around us come alive in full color.  They introduce us to a world of experts and allow them to share their passions with us in the comfort of our own home.   And even better--  they keep the children’s attention and require no extra work or planning on my part, and at least on Netflix or library dvd’s—there are no commercials! :)     


  1. I'm incredibly impressed that you all shut the tv off, and it makes me think that maybe we could (definitely should!) do the same. The TV so easily ends up being the babysitter, the distractor, when really, there are a million other educational, creative, religious, familial things to do that are so much better for children and adults. I love documentaries too and have found some good ones on Netflix. Since you are opposed to movies, I wil tell you I did find two very good movies on netflix: A man for all seaons which was an outstanding drama (nonfiction) of the life of St. Thomas More starring oh I can't remember that wonderful actor's name but very very good. Also, the movie Becket we found on Netflix and that is the nonfiction drama of the life of St. Thomas Becket starring Peter O'Toole as King Henry and Richard Burton as Becket. Oh I loved those. Not sure how old your children are, but they would not be for young children. Becket had a brief sexual scene, now that I think about it, so definitely adult only for that one. I hope you are having a blessed Holy Week.

  2. I meant NOT opposed to movies ...

  3. Hi Kari.

    We love documentaries too! Also we have a good library of Shakespeare plays, Gilbert and Sullivan and other musicals, saints stories as well as movies on DVD.

    I am not a movie person myself but the rest of the family do enjoy sitting down together and having a family movie night. Not educational really but lots of fun.

    We don't watch the regular TV programs either. I prefer the control we have with DVDs: we can watch what we like, when we like. And no ads!

    I wish we had Netflix. It sounds wonderful!

    This is such an interesting topic.

  4. Gardenia- Thanks for the wonderful suggestions. Our family really loves movies, probably because we don't watch t.v.

    I have heard a lot about A Man for All Seasons but have never seen it. I have never heard of Becket but both movies sound worth checking out. Stories of the saints are always so inspiring.

    Hope your holy week is going well and that your Lenten journey of "Shaking the Bonds of Stuff" has been successful and renewing. I did not do as well with it as I had hoped...but maybe I can make up for it this week.

    Blessings, Kari

  5. Sue- I agree completely about the control we have with DVD's. I never used to be much of a movie person, it seemed like such a passive way to spend my time, but I have grown to really appreciate the time to just be with my family relaxing together.

    Thanks for stopping by, I hope and pray you are doing well, Kari



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