Netflix: An Educational Resource

It is always fun to add a movie or video to a school day or to required schoolwork!  When we visit the library, I often have to limit the number of movies that we check out.  I have two very good readers, but we are still normal people – a movie is always a good time!

This past Christmas we finally joined the thousand of others who have a subscription to Netflix.  It all started with our Wii and lots of free time.  Through our Wii and our home internet connection, we were able to immediately stream movies and TV shows to our TV screen.  We discovered childhood favorites like episodes of Kipper and Blue’s Clues (with Steve), and we also found great family movies to share together also.  For $8 a month, we were hooked on a great investment for family entertainment.

As the school days continued in January, I started to explore the educational offerings through Netflix, and I was amazed to find resources for history, science, and math.  Many of them were available instantly through the streaming subscription, but for only $2 more a month, I could have more delivered right to my mailbox in the order I wanted to see them!

So, here’s a tip for those of you who homeschool:  Get a Netflix subscription!  You don’t have to have it stream to your TV.  You can also stream to your laptop or your desktop computer or your iPhone (this saved us during a recent recital when a baby was restless)!  For about $120 a year, you can have not only entertainment for your family, but also educational resources.

When is Netflix helpful?  When your students are bored with school books, when you need a little more info on a subject, when you need a family night and don’t want to pay $120 for one night at the movies, when your students are “bored” (period), when you need your little one to sit still while you try to explain a math problem, when you are hosting a class or play group in your home on a rainy day, when you are stuck in traffic and need to get some “schoolwork” done, when you need a break from it all!

Here are a few suggestions:

  • Try the FREE month first, and see if it works for you. (Just so you know there is no long term subscription with Netflix – cancel at any time)
  • Be the one who controls the Instant Queue and be prepared to monitor your students when they are selecting something to view – I haven’t figured out how to get rid of the inappropriate suggestions in the other menus, except I have found that over time it seems to adjust to your preferences.
  • Here are some of our favorite homeschool-friendly shows/movies:  Beakman’s World (science TV show), Blue’s Clues, Veggie Tales, Leap Frog movies, and documentaries.