For the first time ever to an adult audience in India, Inventure Academy invited parents and their friends to a showing of the movie ‘Screenagers’ on Saturday,19 August, 2017. The documentary was followed by a lively discussion about the movie, led by Dr. Sheela Jayanth of Enfold. Dr. Sheela is a captivating facilitator and helped the audience navigate ideas such as:
- How best to lead by example so that we can tell our children to “do what I do” and not “do what I say”.
- How children can learn to be responsible for themselves and learn self-control; Dr. Sheela shared that self control is a bigger predictor of success than academics.
- The need to both set and enforce consistent boundaries, especially around screens.
- The teenage brain and the functions that it has not yet mastered.
Screenagers is an award winning documentary that probes into the vulnerable aspects of family life, including the director’s own, and depicts challenges faced by teenagers over social media, video games, academics and internet addiction. Through surprising insights from authors and brain scientists, solutions emerge on how we can empower kids to best navigate the digital world. More at www.screenagers.com
The parent audience was engaged by both the documentary and the discussion and felt it was an afternoon very well spent. A 9th grader’s father shared that his key takeaway was that “we should work on ourselves”. A mother of Grade 8 triplets appreciated the “straight talk” while another mom of students in Grade 6 and 10 felt that “this is just the start of the conversation. We’re all in this together and the more we work together, the more effective we can be.”
The movie was first screened during Inventuring week to our senior students. Charmaine Alexander, senior school faculty noted that the “movie was an eye-opener for students of Grades 9-11” and that the startling fact that “under certain circumstances, permanent damage to nerve cells can happen was quite scary to learn.” Student reactions to the documentary varied from a 9th grader who said “it used more hyperbole than necessary”, to another who stated, “it was thought provoking” to the tongue-in-cheek, 7th grader’s “it doesn’t apply so much to me, but my mom really should watch it!”
But perhaps the best summary of the documentary came from Primary & Kindergarten Head, Preet Aarons who feels – “Every parent should see this! It changed my mindset!”