I have an idea I’m working on here that involves a version of the Critique for kids (I had that idea a while ago and a few folks on here mentioned they would be in favor of something like that, so I’m giving it a lot more thought).
After analyzing the first survey, I thought this idea would be a total no-go. The parent response came back heavily on the side of, “We’re completely comfortable with discussing pop culture with our kids” and the parents who choose not to watch movies with their kids are a vocal bunch.
So I thought about it some more and polled the parents again in a follow-up survey. The question I asked was this:
One idea we’ve had is to offer a supplemental parent pull-out that would rotate every three or four months. For example, in January we might offer parents a list of recommended books along with reviews; in February, we might offer a supplement that reviews movies kids are interested in and provides discussion questions that would both affirm and challenge the content from a biblical worldview; in March we could offer a third type of parent resource and then the cycle would roll over again with a book list in April, movie review and discussions questions in May, and so on. Would this be something your family would be interested in?
Most of the parents are in favor of the idea (40.2% said “Absolutely!” 34.4% said “I like it!” 14.5% said “Perhaps” 10% said “Not so much” and 1.9% said “No way!”) but it’s the 11.9% in the last two categories that are puzzling me.
The folks in this group are saying one of two things: 1) We get this resource from Plugged-in; 2) We don’t watch movies at all.
To the folks saying they get this already, I wish I could go back and explain again how I’m thinking this would be different from Plugged-in. I’m less interested in providing folks with a list of numbers of curse words and how many times Character A was disrespectful to his parents. I think those things need to be considered, yes (disprespectful tone in cartoon characters was the number one reason we don’t let our kids watch Arthur anymore). But the direction of the idea of a form of the Critique would be less about counting the number of times our Christian sensibilities are offended and more about taking a look at the story of the movie and discussing together, with our kids, what things we CAN affirm about it as well as what things we need to challenge.
I’m thinking that by offering this resource to the parents, the parents could then choose whether or not to share it with their kids. If that particular family is anti-movie all together, then we’ve not handed something directly to their kids they are completely offended by. On the other hand, I think this could be a very good tool for helping parents begin to engage their children with the culture in a way that does bring about themes of redemption in stories that don’t normally run around in the Christian Culture Book of Order.
Sooo…. if any of you are still around (and I’m not surprised if you aren’t because this blog has been silent and will soon probably go dark altogether), I would love to get your thoughts on this.