I am sure your preschooler loves screen time too. My 3year old gets very limited screen time (mainly our Friday night movie). By now you probably want them to have a cinema experience but not sure how to prepare them (and yourself) for this. Most people take their children for the first time at the age of 3, others prefer an older age.
First things first…
Is your child ready for this?
Some signs of readiness will be:
-sitting still throughout a movie
-stay engaged in the movie and makes comments/ interact
How to prepare for the first cinema experience:
- Choose a movie with their favorite characters in, it is likely that they will sit still and be drawn to it. It will also be familiar to them and this way they will stay engaged.
- Show them trailers and pictures of the movie to hype them up. Let this determine their mood for the movie. Choose another if possible. Make sure they like what they see. If they don’t like it now, chances are they wont like it in the cinema.
- Show them photos of the cinema or take them there beforehand to show them how it looks. Tell them it will be dark as well, a lot of children do not like darkness.
- Remind them of the outing even if you must, put it on a calendar and show a count down. A picture of the movie characters or cinema on the calendar will be great.
- Go in the week, it is quieter (Tuesdays are half price at Ster-Kinerkor).
- Sit in the back aisle, it is easier to slip out if the need is there.
- Take another adult along, incase you need a pair of extra hands.
- Bring a comforting toy, they are likely to hold onto this and forget their ” fears”.
Follow their ques, if you have to leave the cinema so be it. It is however unlikely that this will happen. I would love to know about your cinema experience, let me know how it goes.