100 Family Media Literacy Activities, Ages Pre-School through Teen Years
Are You a “High Hopes” Parent?
Attending to Our Children’s Attention Span
Building the Foundation for Resiliency Skills
Live and Play in Your World: Stimulus Addiction and the Growing Brain
Looking for Meaning in All the Right Places
Parenting Today: The World Has Changed, Have We?
Parenting as a Living System
Reading the Screen
Screen Time and Obesity
Screen Violence: Impact on Self as Relational Being
Teaching Children Gratefulness
100 Family Media Literacy Activities (cont.)
16. Secret wishes.
Find out if your young teen has secret wishes to be like or look like or act like a certain celebrity or screen hero. Discuss the realistic parts of wishing we could be like someone else and the unrealistic part, emphasizing the importance of embracing fully our unique selves. Discuss how screen portrayals can amplify stereotypical images of people and can even get in the way of accepting ourselves as we truly are.
17. Spotting realistic “whole” people on TV and in the movies.
In conjunction with the above activity, you might have your child discuss celebrities or screen heroes who seem well rounded and like ordinary people. What makes them seem well rounded? More ordinary? Have your child observe the celebrities over time and decide on the qualities that either enhance a stereotypical image or a full human being.
18. What do others think about screen stereotypes?
Have your child interview people who are different ages, genders, and from various cultures to find out what they think of stereotypes they encounter on TV, in movies and video games. A few questions for the interview could include: “What are some stereotypical images you have seen recently? Are you offended by them? Why or why not? Do you feel your (age, sex, race) is well represented in the media? Why or why not? What advice would you give to creators of TV shows, movies, and video games when they begin to develop a certain character?”
19. TV, movie and video game heroes.
Encourage your child to list the qualities of what makes a hero/heroine. Add to the list over a week or two so you keep talking about it and fleshing it out. Then point out people in your child’s life who also have some of these same qualities. Discuss the contribution of “everyday heroes/heroines” to your child’s life and what these uncelebrated real-life celebrities bring to it.
20. Hollywood heroes.
In conjunction with the above activity or as a separate activity, have your child pay attention to movies that he/she loves, outlining the actions of the hero—such as fighting somebody or driving a car recklessly. Then ask your child if the real life heroes listed above would ever do such things. Why or why not?
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