Thursday, December 22, 2011

Movie Night and Blog Posts Disclaimer

First, the blog post disclaimer: Those of you that have followed this blog from the beginning, may have noticed a couple of things: 1, My writing skills have started to suffer as it is now getting more difficult to accurately state my thoughts in either language. I guess that means my Spanish is growing, but it's depressing how many times I still can't express myself when talking to people in the community; and 2, I've started to post less post with more videos. This will have to change as the internet is somehow effected by the rainy season, making the uploading of videos a real time drain and not always possible. Therefore, at least until March (the end of the rainy season), look for more frequent (albeit shorter) updates with just photos.

Now for the important thing: Movie Nights, or Noches de Cine as we call them here. Basically, its all thanks to a used projector that I bought while I was at Early In-Service Training in Chiclayo. As with any good used projector salesmen, the guy pitched it as a projector coming from a home for the elderly, that the elderly needed to sell for some money. I'll admit, my first thought was "What? They have retirement homes here?" (and as I write this, I can't help to think that his story was a little flimsy... could it be stolen?). However, before I get too far off track, S/.500 later I am a proud owner of a used projector and the Health Promoter kids in Yuracoto get to host a free movie night once a week, usually on a Friday or Saturday.

 I have big plans of using Noches de Cine to gain a captive audience (perfect for 5 minute charlas about various teen related topics), and sell tickets or candy to raise money for the youth group, but for now its pretty simple: I show up with my laptop, speakers, projector, a movie I bought at the market,  a few questions for the kids to think about while they watch the movie, and we start at 6 o'clock sharp.

For the kids, its seems to be a big deal. Keep in mind that the nearest movie theater is at least an 8 hour bus ride away and relatively expensive. I'm willing to bet, none of these kids have actually seen a movie on the big screen before,which is kinda sad for me. Going to see a movie, and just veggin' out for a few hours, is one of my favorite pastimes.

Our first two screenings were: "Goal!"/"Gol!" and "Easy A"/"Se Dice De Mi". Goal (12 kids came to this one, 16 came to Easy A... we're growing in numbers!) was a good opportunity to talk about self-esteem, developing a good support system, and striving to reach your goals (Is there a pun there?). Easy A , a pop version of the Scarlet Letter, was a good way hit tons of topics, but we mainly focused on gender roles (Why does a guy get called a "stud", but a girl is called "easy"?), being a good friend, the ABCs of safe sex, and sexuality (Why the does the gay character in the movie get beat up at school?)*. Pretty difficult subjects for kids to think about out of context, but having entertaining movie to provide examples, really helps.

Her's a picture of my kids enjoying "Easy A":

* The questions I used for the screening of ¨Easy A¨ came from this website.     It´s a mix of a review with analysis of the gender role issues in the movie. If you´ve got time, feel free to check it out:

Easy A and the History of Sexuality