10 Essential Animated Disney Movies to Introduce to your Kids!

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When determining what films you will introduce to your kids, movies other than the ones on this list may be your priority. This writer says to firmly follow your heart and treat your kiddos to the films that truly mean the most to you. A movie that brings nostalgia and personal meaning is always going to be the best to bond over. Make sure you prioritize the films a beloved family member showed you when you were young, as well as movies you’ve come to appreciate later in life as well! But, if you are looking for some more essential films to add to your roster, you’ve come to the right place!

  • Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (1937) – The full-length animated feature to start it all! Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs is a bit spooky for young ones but she was many people’s first princess and this film still has a massive influence! Whenever you decide to show this film, you’ll truly step back into history!
  • Peter Pan (1953) – Sometimes growing up is not so fun. Even as an adult, that feeling remains. Peter Pan is really for all kids – but can be especially helpful for your little ones who may be struggling with the whole growing-up process. Make your favorite snack and comfy up with your growing baby and watch this one together!
  • Mary Poppins (1964) – This movie is a delight. You don’t need me to tell you that but I still need to emphasize it. It really feels that it has trended time – and the music is still so fantastic. Important key concepts about being a kid are highlighted in the film, and your kids will learn to fall in love with Julie Andrew!
  • The Jungle Book (1967) – There is just something about this film. It successfully navigates the struggles of Mowgli with musically gifted animal sidekicks! Speaking of musically gifted, this film has one of the best soundtracks!
  • Fox and the Hound (1981) – This film was not put on here to break hearts! I just believe it’s essential to any coming-of-age list. A little fox and a hound make unlikely pals and their determination to be buds is everything – the message of this film is truly beautiful!
  • The Little Mermaid (1989) – Not only was this film the beginning of the Disney Renaissance, but I mean… it’s The Little Mermaid. The head-and-heart strong princess determined to get her independence is still a hit with the littles. Plus, there always seems to be a ‘The Little Mermaid ride, no matter what park you head to!
  • Beauty and the Beast (1991) – Okay, a lot of princess films are making the list, but understand me – some of these stories are just timeless! There is no better way to encourage a healthy love of reading than making sure Beauty and the Beast are in your lineup! Belle quickly becomes a helpless girl, to an empowered and independent character at the end of this. We love growth!
  • The Lion King (1993) – Learning about your place in the world is something that many of us are still figuring out. Simba’s growth – all whilst questioning his place the entire film is something that struck me – even as a child. I was able to enjoy this movie as a child and I cannot recommend it enough!
  • Frozen (2013) – You may not want to show your child this film for the simple fear of having to listen to the soundtrack over and over again, but just let it go. We love this film for the adventure, music, visuals, and the bond of sisterhood!
  • Encanto (2021) – This film really talked about the importance of family. How everyone is unique and brings their own individuality to the table. Such a powerful message in a visually stunning film. Plus, when you get tired of hearing ‘Let it Go’ nonstop, you can promptly turn to ‘We Don’t Talk About Bruno’!

Photo Credit: Disney

10 Essential Animated Disney Movies to Introduce to your Kids! 1

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Danielle H