SCBWI's Blueboard - A Message & Chat Board

Movies/TV Middle Schoolers are into??

Discussion started on

Member
Poster Plus
  • *
  • SCBWI Member
  • SCBWI PAL
  • SCBWI Region carolinas
I'm finishing revisions on a book that was originally set in the 80s (but got a big NO from my agent for the time period). In the past version, the 13 year-old girls were singing and dancing to Grease at a sleepover. Is there a current movie that kids would watch over and over and would sing all the songs to? My daughter in high school says High School Musical, but that's because it was popular when she was in middle school. My 6th grader liked Descendants but she's on the autism spectrum and is immature for her age so I'm thinking it's more popular with elem. kids.
(On another note, my high school daughter went to camp where they stayed in a dorm and the girls were all watching Grease on their laptops-but again, is this just because they're artsy teenagers?)

As fas as TV goes, they were watching their favorite weekly show, Family Ties. I've changed it to The Voice- any other suggestions? Are there any weekly shows that middle schoolers watch? My youngest watches a bunch of shows on Disney/Netflix like MC2 and H20 (LOVE that one!!) but again, not sure if this is young for most middle schoolers.
My kids are of NO help here.

Any suggestions???    :thanx
#1 - December 27, 2017, 11:31 AM
EXTRAORDINARY ( Skypony Press  May 2015)
CALL ME SUNFLOWER (Skypony Press May 2017)

If the girls like singing and dancing, maybe you could do something that is completely original  instead of copy something from television which would be more interesting and keep the readers wanting to read your book.
#2 - December 27, 2017, 05:25 PM

Global Moderator
Poster Plus
  • ***
  • SCBWI Member
  • SCBWI Moderator
  • SCBWI PAL
  • SCBWI Region longislandny
My middle schooler is a boy, but he watches Nick: Henry Danger, the Thundermans. He'll also watch Cartoon Network and Boomerang. He likes Scooby Doo and Tom and Jerry and many other animated shows. I think you need to consider the time of day that these kids are watching TV. (He's often watching between homework and dinner: 6-7 PM) Also, today, a lot of kids watch You Tube videos. With On Demand and Netflix, they can get whatever they are into and go back to old friends that have gone off the air. (For my son, Bey Blades and Pokemon online, along with Life Hacks and stuff on his favorite books and movies: Harry Potter in 15 seconds, anyone.) Take a close look at  your characters and the parents who are setting their rules. Then look for what's on or available and think hard about what they'd like and what they'd be allowed to see. It's possible to find anything today.
#3 - December 27, 2017, 06:39 PM

Global Moderator
Poster Plus
  • ***
  • SCBWI Member
  • SCBWI Region socal
Any show you name could become dated quickly. How about having the girls sing and dance to individual play lists they've compiled or a Pandora list? If you want them to watch something, they could stumble across some old DVDs and sing along with the Oompah Loompah song from Charlie and the Chocolate Factory or something else. I'm sure you can come up with better suggestions, but I don't think you need to tie yourself down to a IRL show.
#4 - December 28, 2017, 09:33 AM

I teach 9th graders, who are essentially slightly larger middle schoolers, and they watch tons of different shows, very few of which are main stream television.  They watch netflix originals, dramas, crime shows, comedies, youtube channels, and so much more.   I would be leery of naming a current show in fear of it becoming dated quickly.  I will say this, almost all of them are into Stranger Things and cannot wait for season 3.  Which is ironic for your situation because it's set in the 80's.  Oh, and Sponge Bob, too.  They go nutty over that one.
#5 - December 28, 2017, 09:43 AM

Reader, reader, reader...
Administrator
Poster Plus
  • ****
  • SCBWI Member
  • SCBWI Region rmc
My daughter and her closest friends (8th grade) are all in choir (or musical theater), so when they get together, they sing songs from whatever the current production/program covers. (Not much help there...) They also sing along with the radio and/or Pandora, but pop songs move in and out of fashion so quickly that it's probably not a good idea to name a particular song. I like the idea of coming up with a fictitious program/song that's trending in your novel alone.
#6 - December 28, 2017, 12:05 PM
Robin
Teen Books A Guide for Families (Vol. 1&2): https://www.amazon.com/s?field-keywords=robin+prehn
My Blog: http://robinellen.livejournal.com

Member
Poster Plus
  • *
  • SCBWI Member
  • SCBWI PAL
  • SCBWI Region carolinas
Interesting responses. I think having Netflix and access to old TV and music means that kids have a lot of choices, though I know some things are more popular than others. Since things change quickly, I can see how picking a show or music can date a book. However, I couldn't help putting in the kid who loves 80s music and whose favorite band is REM.  :yup
And I went with the girls watching Grease and singing the songs since their school had recently put on a production, (which I know happens all the time). There is a reference to Taylor Swift but I'll see if my agent thinks I should just keep it to generic stuff or make it up.

BTW, Debbie, watch out for Life Hacks. My 12 yo decided to take the advice from the show, sneaking out of the movie theater to grab a large cup from the trashcan and asking for refills on Sprite which we never bought to begin with. She insisted it wasn't stealing since the show tells you it's a way to get around paying for something....most kids might laugh at the videos but for kids who are easily influenced, like my daughter on the spectrum who also suffers from developmental trauma, it's a dangerous thing. And we can't block it on her device because it's considered G-rated and appropriate.  :aah
#7 - December 30, 2017, 09:21 AM
EXTRAORDINARY ( Skypony Press  May 2015)
CALL ME SUNFLOWER (Skypony Press May 2017)

Global Moderator
Poster Plus
  • ***
  • SCBWI Member
  • SCBWI Region westcentny
I would just make up a TV show that sounds like what you are trying to convey. Like "The Best Singer Show" instead of "The Voice" (I know, my fake name stinks). Or say they were watching "Fake TV Show Name" on "Real Network" to get the idea across?
#8 - December 30, 2017, 02:08 PM
BLACKOUT -- available now
DESERTED -- available now
SISTERS DON'T TELL -- available now
www.deenalipomi.com

Global Moderator
Poster Plus
  • ***
  • SCBWI Member
  • SCBWI Moderator
  • SCBWI PAL
  • SCBWI Region longislandny
BTW, Debbie, watch out for Life Hacks. My 12 yo decided to take the advice from the show, sneaking out of the movie theater to grab a large cup from the trashcan and asking for refills on Sprite which we never bought to begin with. She insisted it wasn't stealing since the show tells you it's a way to get around paying for something....most kids might laugh at the videos but for kids who are easily influenced, like my daughter on the spectrum who also suffers from developmental trauma, it's a dangerous thing. And we can't block it on her device because it's considered G-rated and appropriate.  :aah

Thanks for the warning. We've had some conversations about the dangerousness of some hacks. (A used cup is pretty gross if you ask me. Never mind the stealing.) We've even gone into the science behind some. My son asks. I'm very grateful for that. My daughter is also on the spectrum, but her brother kind of keeps her in check. She's also been known to comment on what she sees.
#9 - December 30, 2017, 06:04 PM

Members:

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.