Posted in Reviews

Use Movies as Educational Tools with Z-Guide to the Movies – Review


Zeezok Publishing has been providing educational materials since 2003.  They publish unit studies and Z-Guides to the Movies.


We love watching movies in our homeschool, and I jumped at the chance to review a Z-Guide again this year.  Z-Guides are unit studies for use with a specific movie.  Because I loved the movie “My Side of the Mountain” and hadn’t watched it with my children yet, I requested the Z-Guide e-book for it, in exchange for an honest review 🙂

Photobucket My Side of the Mountain’s Z-Guide is designed for middle school, since the main character of the movie is 12.  We watched with my 12 year old son and we also included my 7 year old daughter – she LOVED the movie and the activities in the guide!  Our study covered Natural Science, Henry David Thoreau, and Survival Skills.

All Z-Guides include question sheets along with activities.  The initial, Movie Review Questions are designed to be answered as the child watches the movie.  We skipped this part ourselves as I’m not a big fan of comprehension questions, we all watched together as a family so I knew my children were paying attention, and it’s not a complex movie.

Activities include Hands-on, Worldview, and Family Discussion, and This Z-Guide also included a word-search – something my daughter in particular likes to do.  Worldview helps the student understand what worldview the movie is coming from. The Family discussion questions at the end are a good tool to compare your family’s Photobucketworldview to the movie’s.  Zeezok recommends doing two activities each day (10 activities in all), so that the Z-Guide takes a week to complete, which is about the amount of time we spent on it.  This particular Z-Guide is 32 pages long.  At the end of each Z-Guide is also a resource list including websites and books for further study, and an Answer key.  Short writing assignments were also a part of this Z-Guide.  My two children enjoyed learning all about Thoreau (whom the main character quoted), made a packing list for a solo trip, and designed their own shelters, among other activities.
There are many movies included as Z-Guides, including historically-based ones.  If you can’t find a Z-Guide for the movie you want, check back in the Spring – Zeezok is adding 25 more movie guides.  Z-Guides are in e-book or CD-format, for $12.99 US each for single use, or $49.99 US for use in a co-op or classroom.  Zeezok also offers for sale each movie they have a Z-Guide for, for instance My Side of the Mountain costs $19.98 US (we borrowed our copy from the local library).  Shipping is via USPS, worldwide.

Love, Luck &



Kimberly is a homeschooling mother of two living with her dear husband of over 25 years in Halifax, Nova Scotia. She works from home as a homeschool coach and offers OBM, writing, editing, social media, and tech services. In her free time she likes to hand-spin, knit, read, volunteer in local theatre, and horseback ride.