Your kids will be so excited about movies, they'll hardly notice they are writing!

Film is the literature of the 20th century! Explore a variety of memorable movies with Brave Writer Instructor Johannah Bogart. She will facilitate the class, guiding students to explore the literary and cinematic elements of film. Students will watch one movie per week and chat about it in Brave Writer's online classroom (log in when it's convenient in your time zone). 

Sessions #

Our Fall Movie Discussion Club is organized into the following sessions, please see the "Class Sessions" tab for more information on each and to find out what movies we'll be watching!

  • September 5- 30: Fantasy Worlds
  • November 6- December 1: Time Travel in Movies

Approach #

Participants in our Movie Discussion Club will develop skills that transfer to the study of literature or any textual or visual analysis. Take advantage of this pleasurable way to expand your child's writing and thinking skills. And remember the popcorn!

Be sure to tell your kids: There are no essays or writing assignments in this club. They will write, naturally, as they post their thoughts and responses in our online classroom. But since none of their writing will be revised, polished, or graded, your kids will have the chance to explore their thinking using written language, without the pressure to "perform." 

Later, when students write essays in other classes or at home, they will find they have greater access to their thoughts and ideas; they'll associate sharing their opinions in writing with ease, delight, flying in a cat bus, and running on water!

Streaming the Movies #

Follow our link to Amazon or look for these movies in your local library system, through Facets Multimedia (—a nonprofit film education and resource center, or online through Hulu, Netflix, or iTunes. 

Prescreening Resources #

In order to evaluate whether or not these movies are appropriate for your family, we recommend watching them first and/or using one of the websites below to research titles. It is possible to "sit out" one of the films and participate in the remaining three, though not for a reduced price. 

For more information about how the classes are run, please read about online classes.

  • Sept 5-30 Fantasy Worlds
  • Nov 6- Dec 1 Time Travel in Movies

FANTASY WORLDS (September 5- 30, 2017)

From underworlds to magic wands, good fantasy movies know how to cast a spell. Sprinkle some fairy dust on your popcorn and get ready as Brave Writer Instructor Johannah Bogart guides you through four imagined worlds of heroes, dragons, and half-gods. 


1. HARRY POTTER AND THE CHAMBER OF SECRETS (2002, PG) Harry returns to Hogwarts, still famous and a hero, when strange things start to happen... people are turning to stone and no-one knows what, or who, is doing it.

2. PERCY JACKSON & THE OLYMPIANS (2010, PG) A young boy discovers he's the descendant of a Greek god and sets out on an adventure to settle an on-going battle between the gods. Based on the book by Rick Riordan.

3. HOW TO TRAIN YOUR DRAGON (2010, PG) Hiccup is a young Viking who defies convention when he befriends one of his deadliest foes -- a ferocious dragon he calls Toothless. But humans and dragons are supposed to be mortal enemies, not buddies, and this unlikely pair must overcome many obstacles and one ultimate challenge - to save both their worlds.

4. FROZEN (2013, PG) In "Frozen," fearless optimist Anna teams up with rugged mountain man Kristoff and his loyal reindeer Sven in an epic journey.

TIME TRAVEL (November 6-December 1, 2017)

Go two hundred years into the past or a hundred lightyears into the future with these movies about time travel. Some of them are brain-bending, others are awe-inspiring. Brave Writer Instructor Johannah Bogart will be there to help you keep the physics straight. Five weeks, four movies, Future You will thank you.


1. The Time Machine (G, 1960) Rod Taylor ("The Birds") stars as a turn-of-the-century inventor whose time machine inadvertantly transports him thousands of years into the future.

2. Back to the Future (PG, 1985) Marty McFly (Michael J. Fox) is blasted to 1955 in the time machine created by Doc Brown (Christopher Lloyd) and finds himself in a time-shattering situation that jeopardizes his future.

3. Brother Future (PG, 1991) T.J. is a streetwise teenager who thinks only of himself. He puts little value in education and often skips out on his high school classes. While running from the police, he's hit by a car and wakes as a slave on an 1820's plantation. He quickly learns the value of education and the freedom he once took for granted. Only by learning to put others' needs before his own can he get back home. 

4. Star Trek (PG-13, 2009)  The greatest adventure of all time begins with Star Trek, the incredible story of a young crew's maiden voyage onboard the most advanced starship ever created: the U.S.S. Enterprise.

Class Structure Description #

Brave Writer online classes are specially designed with the busy homeschooling parent in mind. Classes last anywhere from four to six weeks. We offer courses that address a specific writing need so that you can take the ones that suit your family throughout the school year. Short class sessions enable you to work around family vacations, out-of-town swim meets, recovering from wisdom teeth removal, and visits from grandparents. We operate on the quarter system, including a summer session. Our most popular classes repeat each quarter, while others are seasonal.

Our classes meet in a customized online classroom, designed specifically to meet the needs of Brave Writer. Only registered students and the instructor have access to the classroom to ensure your privacy. Assignments and reading materials are posted by Brave Writer instructors each week (no additional supply fees necessary, unless otherwise indicated). Either you (homeschooling parent) or your child (homeschooling student) will visit the classroom daily at your convenience to read helpful information about the current topic or to find the writing assignment. We operate "asynchronously" (which means that the discussion is not live, but that posted information remains available to you in your time zone at your convenience). Instructors check the classroom throughout the day to answer questions and give feedback on writing.

Writing is done at home and then typed into the classroom, and shared with both the instructor and other classmates. You're not required to be online at any specific time of the day. We have students from all over the world participating in our classes so "live" discussion is impossible. Instead, the online classroom enables the instructor to post information and assignments when it is convenient to the instructor. Then, when it is convenient for you, you come to the classroom and read the latest postings.

Instructor feedback to student writing is offered for all participants to read. Writing questions are welcomed and encouraged! That's the point of class. We aim to give you immediate support as you face writing obstacles.

Brave Writer takes seriously the need for encouragement and emotional safety in writing. No student is ever at risk of being humiliated or mistreated. All online dialog is respectful and supportive of your child's process. This is the core of Brave Writer philosophy. You can read about Brave Writer values here.

What makes our program especially unique in the world of online education is that we value a corporate experience. Rather than teaching your child in a tutorial format, we prefer students to have the opportunity to both publish their work for an audience (other students) and also to have the chance to read other student writing. In no other setting is this possible. Schools-in-buildings rarely have students read each other's work. Homeschooled children are rarely in a classroom environment to begin with, so the opportunity to read peer-writing is nil.

Our classes provide an utterly unique experience in the world of writing instruction. Since most writers grow through emulation of good writing, it is a real advantage to Brave Writer kids to get the chance to read the writing of their fellow home-educated peers. They love it! They get to examine and internalize other ways of writing, analyzing and expressing ideas similar to their own. They have the chance to validate and cheer on their peers. And of course, the best part of all is that they receive the praise and affirmation of kids just like them.

Not only that, all instructor feedback is posted to the classroom for all students to read. That means your kids get the benefit of instructor comments on many papers, not just their own. We've noted that this style of instruction is especially effective and hope you'll agree!