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These Back-to-School Movies Will Help You Get Psyched for a New School Year

Get back into the school spirit with these feel-good flicks!

Maria Bailey · 3 months ago

School of Rock

Paramount Pictures

Feeling those back-to-school blues? Yeah, we hear you. But you'll be excited to return to the classroom and reunite with your buddies after watching these back-to-school flicks! No matter how you feel about the return of classes, watching a fun movie together with the fam is a great way to celebrate the end of an awesome summer and gear up for the year ahead.

1. School of Rock

Get ready to bust out those air guitars and rock 'n' roll faces while jammin' out to School of Rock. This all-time classic back-to-school flick stars the hilarious Jack Black, who plays a failed wannabe rock star who decides to earn a few extra bucks by becoming a substitute teacher. He surprises everyone by transforming his class of straight-A students into a mind-blowing rock band! Are you ready to rock? 

2. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone

It's time to put your cloak on and grab your wand because classes are in session at Hogwarts! But rather than math and science, magic, witchcraft, and wizardry are on the class schedule. Follow Harry as he makes friends and navigates his first year at Hogwarts in Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone, based on the first book of JK Rowling's magical series!

3. Diary of a Wimpy Kid

Based on the outrageously funny (and hugely popular) books by Jeff Kinney, Diary of a Wimpy Kid follows sixth-grader Greg Heffley as he attempts to figure out the social order of middle school. His quest: to be deemed "popular." Get ready to laugh away those school jitters with plenty of tween-friendly jokes and mischief. 

4. Akeelah and the Bee

Get ready for an inspiring story about a young girl, big words, and big dreams. Akeelah and the Bee is centered around an 11-year-old student from South Los Angeles who discovers she has a special talent: spelling. She sets her sights on competing in the National Spelling Bee, but her overburdened mother disapproves. A teacher, however, recognizes Akeelah's talent and pushes her to turn her dream into a reality.  

5. High School Musical

Tweens won't be able to get enough of this peppy Disney Channel musical starring Zac Efron and Vanessa Hudgens. He's a popular high school athlete, and she's an academically gifted girl. A school musical brings them together where they form an unlikely friendship, throwing the school social order out the window. From the catchy songs to the high school cliques and hints at romance, High School Musical might just remind mom and dad of a kid-friendlier version of another high school musical (Grease, anyone?). Don't miss the two sequels!

6. Monsters University

Monsters have dreams, too. Mike Wazowski's dream was a pretty straightforward one: to become a top-notch Scarer. The odds were stacked against him, though. As a small, round and monocular monster, he was anything but scary. He didn't let that stop him from enrolling in Monsters University, where he meets Sulley, a natural-born Scarer — and his newfound rival. The pair are kicked out of MU's Scare Program, which forces them to learn to work together.

7. Matilda

Roald Dahl's beloved book comes to life in Matilda, starring Mara Wilson, a girl genius with horrible parents and an evil school principal. Everything changes when she befriends her school teacher, Miss Honey, who discovers the full extent of Matilda's powers. 

8. Recess: Taking the Fifth Grade

The Recess kids make the jump from TV series to movie as they embark on fifth grade at Third Street School. Things have changed, though — and not for the better. There's no pizza, no play area, no closets, and their teacher turns out to be the evil Mrs. Finster. The gang takes measures into their own hands by standing up for what they believe in and improving the school they love. 

9. Napoleon Dynamite

Not everyone is popular in high school — just ask Napoleon Dynamite, a socially awkward teenager who lives with his grandmother in Preston, Ohio. He has trouble fitting in, that is, until he befriends the new kid Pedro, and the two decide to launch a campaign to run for class president. This quirky indie coming-of-age story ultimately celebrates misfits and nunchuck skills — yes, nunchuck skills.

10. Wonder

Based on the New York Times bestseller of the same name, Wonder tells the inspiring and heartwarming story of a young boy who enters a mainstream school for the first time. Unlike the other kids in school, this fifth-grader was born with facial differences — but that's not the only reason he stands out in a crowd. Starring Julia Roberts and Owen Wilson, this uplifting movie is perfect for the whole family.