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10 things “Beauty and the Beast” can teach your kids

The new live-action “Beauty and the Beast” is full of many good lessons you’ll want your kids to learn, much more than the animated 1991 version.

Here are some of those important messages:

  1. Women don’t need a man to save them. They can be the hero. Belle saves her father, saves the beast, helps save the castle.
  2. Smart girls rule! In this story, you learn that only boys attend school. And, of course, that Belle is odd because she reads. Yet, she can figure out how to make a washing machine using a bucket, a well and a farm animal.
  3. Fathers are important. Belle is who she is because her father encouraged her to be smart and independent. The Beast is who he is because his father turned cruel.
  4. You get more done working together. Dinner becomes amazing when all the plates sing and dance. The villagers are thwarted when all of the castle inhabitants attack them.
  5. Sometimes you have to take a stand against friends. LeFou learns this as Gaston becomes increasingly dastardly.
  6. Everyone has a reason why they are how they are, but that’s not an excuse for bad behavior. Yes, the Beast was unloved by his father, but he didn’t have to become his father.
  7. Your actions have lasting affect on those around you. One act of cruelty by the Beast of not being hospitable caused the whole castle to suffer.
  8. The arts are cool. Belle’s father makes the coolest music boxes. The garderobe and the cadenza use their musical talent to save and entertain the castle.
  9. It’s important how you handle death. Both Belle and Beast lose their mothers and their fathers do little to explain it to them or help them grieve.
  10. You can’t judge a book by its cover. The beast looks cruel, but isn’t. The old spinster woman isn’t who you think she is. And Gaston is the ugliest of all.

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