Discussion Packet

A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood – Discussion Guide

Discussion Guide:

1. How do you think Lloyd could have reacted better at his sister’s wedding when we saw his dad?
Caregiver Note: Lloyd’s anger at his father for abandoning his mother was justified, but his reaction to seeing his father was inappropriate. Anger is a normal emotion but how we express it is important. This is a great way to help your children understand appropriate ways to release their anger.

2. Why do you think Lloyd struggled to trust that Mr. Rogers was as nice in person as he appeared?
Caregiver Note: Many times our children struggle to trust people because of the hurt they have experienced. Just as Lloyd struggled to believe that Mr. Rogers was a nice guy because of his childhood trauma, our children feel the same way. Helping them to verbalize this and recognize that it is not fair to judge other people based on past experiences can help your child differentiate who their anger is directed at.

3. Has there ever been someone you thought was nice who turned out to be mean?
Caregiver Note: Often when we meet someone, we meet a false version of them. Sometimes they appear nice at first but later turn out to be mean. This allows your child to talk about a teacher, a classmate, or a previous caregiver they initially thought was nice but turned out to not be nice. Explore their reasoning as to why they felt this person was mean and help them identify valid or invalid points.

4. Has there ever been someone you thought was mean and turned out to be nice? How so?
Caregiver Note: We all have bad days. If you met me on a bad day you may think I’m mean, but I know I am a genuinely nice person. Recognizing that first impressions are not always accurate can help your child build relationships in the future by providing a second chance and not relying on their first opinion.

5. What regrets do you think Lloyd has in looking back at his choices throughout this movie?
Caregiver Note: We all have regrets. Having our children identify what might be some of Lloyd’s regrets can open up the discussion about any regrets that they have. As we saw in the movie, Lloyd was able to resolve his regrets and your children are able to do that as well with your help.

6. What kind of father do you think Lloyd turned out to be?
Caregiver Note: Lloyd did not have the greatest example of being a father. He later became a father and then abandoned his family at the hospital while his dad was recovering from a heart attack. Sometimes our children have not had the best example provided to them but they now have the chance to learn appropriate skills from a parent who models them.

7. Have you ever had to ask for forgiveness? What did that feel like?
Caregiver Note: Admitting we are wrong and asking for forgiveness is hard. Helping them explore a time they had to ask for forgiveness and providing praise to them for their bravery to do so is a great bonding moment. As the parent, it would be great to also share a time that you had to ask for forgiveness as well to help establish that we all make mistakes but it is how we handle it that matters.

8. What are some ways you can forgive someone who has hurt you?
Caregiver Note: Forgiving can be hard when someone has hurt you. Use this opportunity to help point out the heaviness that Lloyd carried around before forgiving his father and expressing your desire for them to not have that same burden. Ask them if there is a way you can help.

9. What does forgiveness look like?
Caregiver Note: Everyone’s view of forgiveness is different. Some view it as simply apologizing, others prefer to see behavior change. Identifying what your child needs in order to experience forgiveness is a powerful tool to have as a parent, as it allows you to speak your child’s love language.

10. If you were to visit Mr. Rogers, what would your episode be about?
Caregiver Note: Mr. Rogers’ episodes always centered around a topic, whether friendships, death, or moving away. Allowing your child to explore the central theme of this episode with Mr. Rogers helps you understand where your child’s concerns and values are, and allows them to use their imagination. They may not have any serious topic for their episode, so use this time to engage in fun play about their episode.

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NOTE: Inclusion on these lists does not necessarily mean endorsement. Furthermore, with all our resources, we highly recommend you preview them first to determine if there are any trauma triggers that your child may not be ready to handle. Transfiguring Adoption does not intend for its reviewers nor its reviews to be professional, medical or legal advice. These reviews and discussion guides are intended to help parents to better be able to connect and understand their children who come from traumatic backgrounds.

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