Does a Christmas Movie Count as an Education Movie?

We say yes!

You may think educators are too stuffy or intellectual to put on a Christmas movie and call it “an education movie,” but at Learnwell, we believe this season is all about slowing down, taking time to rest and waiting with expectation for the arrival of Christmas.

Whether your children are in public, private, hybrid school or homeschooled, we encourage families to share traditions and inspirational reading together all year long — but especially leading up to Christmas.

Recently, one of our teachers shared an excerpt from The Jesus Storybook Bible.

This part of Jesus’ story reminds us that studying Scripture through the lens of history is just one way to slow down and savor this time of year.

Here are some other ways that our teachers and staff enjoy slowing down and celebrating the Christmas season.

Christmas Carols and Serving Others

Our middle school language arts teacher, Leslie Hyland, said she and her family enjoy serving at a memory care residential facility. They sing Christmas carols and pass out candy canes for the residents.

Christmas Lights and Encouraging Others

Learnwell’s fourth- and fifth-grade teacher, Cori Panyard, celebrates the season by participating in a fun Christmas-light-themed contest.

“Each year in the days before Christmas, our girls make cards and awards for the ‘Best Christmas Lights of the Season,'” she said.

“Then after dark, we load into the car with Christmas music, hot chocolate, and pen and paper, and we head out in search of fabulous neighborhood Christmas lights. We take pictures of our favorites and write down addresses so that at the end of the evening we can return to each of our girls’ favorites and deliver their awards. Sometimes if it’s not too late, we knock on doors or meet people outside their homes. More often, we just put the awards in their mailbox.”

Advent Candles and Baking

Founder and Principal, Dr. Melissa Shipman, celebrates with her family by lighting a nightly candle on an Advent wreath. “We don’t hit it every night,” she said, “but most. For sure, it’s one of our favorite Advent traditions! We also bake several kinds of cookies that we only bake at Christmas. I do tend to wait until we can’t stand it anymore — who needs extra sweets around for a whole month? We want them, but we don’t need them.”

Dr. Shipman and her family also enjoy throwing a good Christmas party, and they look forward to doing that soon.

Christmas Movies (Education Movies? Yes!) and Chili

Allison Van Beneden, our second-grade teacher, celebrates with Christmas lights, Christmas-themed movies, and enjoying chili with Grandpa.

Elf Hunt and Reading

Brooke Turbyfill, Learnwell’s director of communication and community, enjoys looking at Christmas lights with her family; watching her children discover where Elfred, the mischievous elf, has been hiding each morning; and reading from Ann Voskamp’s Unwrapping the Greatest Gift: A Family Celebration of Christmas.

So, parents, let this be your official permission slip: Take the time to watch a Christmas movie one afternoon and call it education. If it refuels you, helps your kids settle down, and reminds everyone that this season is about slowing the pace, go ahead and scroll to your Christmas movie list on Netflix or Amazon. Enjoy!