Posted by gtchatmod
This week at #gtchat, we explored movies and television that inspire gifted kids. They can portray gifted children in a negative light. Negativity, however, is often in the eye of the beholder. Movies and television programs reflect popular culture; and for that reason portray gifted children in a way they feel meets their audience’s expectations. Those which show gifted children in a one-dimensional light – smart kid who’s socially inept; the perfect student; a child regarded only for their contributions to society … these are negative portrayals.
What’s the downside of movies and television portraying gifted children only as geniuses or nerds? Kids are kids; they process what they see on the big and small screen. Gifted children rarely receive guidance on how to perceive these images and many adopt negative responses to being seen only for their intelligence or talents. When gifted children believe that they are only appreciated for their brain power, it can affect not only their behavior towards others but also their self-image. A poor self-image can lead to mental health issues and worse.
When gifted children see kids like themselves valued by society in films and television, they will benefit in how they see themselves and how they interact with others. Self-worth is a powerful motivator to be successful, respectful, and empathetic toward others. It improves their quality of life and of those around them; with family members, schoolmates, and teachers.
“When gifted kids see an “average” child in film or on television, they don’t see a reflection of themselves. They see someone with whom they can’t identify. This contributes to a sense separateness & increases feelings of isolation. Representation does the opposite.” ~ Jeffrey Farley, M.Ed., District Special Programs Coordinator, Beaumont ISD
When integrated into a gifted curriculum, movies and television can be a powerful teaching tool to guide students; to project role-models; to inspire creativity; to promote social consciousness. Using film and television in the classroom requires careful scrutiny of resources prior to their use. Teachers should be cognizant of individual needs of their students.
Many are fans of the recent movie, “Gifted”. They did a good job of portraying a multi-dimensional character in a highly relatable situation in a realistic way. It was obvious they knew their subject matter. Another film, Incredibles 2, debuts this week. The original, The Incredibles, has been a favorite of parents. Many films in the scifi genre include gifted children. They can often provide kids with a positive role-model.
Please check out our resources listed below! A transcript of this chat can be found at Wakelet which includes many great suggestions for movies and television programs that can inspire gifted children.
Global #gtchat Powered by the Texas Association for the Gifted and Talented is a weekly chat on Twitter. Join us Thursdays at 8E/7C/6M/5P in the U.S. and Fridays at Noon NZST/10 AM AEST/1 AM UK to discuss current topics in the gifted community and meet experts in the field. Transcripts of our weekly chats can be found at Wakelet. Our Facebook Page provides information on the chat and news and information regarding the gifted community. Also, checkout our Pinterest Page and Playlist on YouTube.
Movie: Gifted (2017) (Preview YouTube 2:34)
Movie: The Incredibles (Trailer YouTube 2:24)
Movie: The Incredibles 2 (Trailer YouTube 2:16)
Graphic courtesy of Lisa Conrad