Since 2008, Youth In Motion has provided free LGBTQ themed movies, with professionally created curricula and action guides, to student clubs and educators in middle and high schools. Youth in Motion now supports over 650 schools in 38 states!
We believe that an inclusive curriculum is one step to creating truly safe and welcoming schools.
Youth in Motion’s 2013-2014 school year DVD release, Insights: Queer Youth Defining Our Future, includes short films representing a range of LGBTQ youth experiences—from authentic self-expression to classmate crushes to films that delve into the dangers of bullying. The collection comes with a Curriculum Guide so that teachers can use these films in their everyday teaching, as well as a fabulous Action Guide to help build student leadership and activist skills.
Why LGBT Films and Why Support Youth In Motion?
Even though many youth are finding the courage to come out in middle or high school, we know that our schools aren’t always the safest or most welcoming places for LGBTQ, questioning, or straight ally students, or for students with LGBTQ family members. We have achieved great victories like the passage of the FAIR Education Act in California, yet still have a long way to go in ending ignorance, harassment, and violence nationwide.
We have better representation in films and on tv shows like Glee. However, we don’t often get to see the diversity of our identities and experiences represented on the big or small screens, or experience the power of watching together in a communal setting.
Students, help us get the word out about why YOU need Youth in Motion by filling out our survey.
Here's some of the inspiring feedback we've gotten.
"We use Insights to discuss as a group the complication of relationships and dating for LGBT youth, the experience of youth whose gender is non-binary, and ways in which we can help prevent anti-LGBT harassment at our school. The ability for Gay-Straight Alliances to have access to this resource is great."
--Justin Barr, GSA President, Greenville High School
"No! Don't stop it now! Please let us keep watching it and miss 6th hour!" -the majority of students watching it during our GSA meeting."
--Kaisa Lee, Seward Montessori School
"Genderfreak engaged the students in a way no other film had to date. It was a perfect film for our community. We look forward to seeing more. The Youth in Motion films have become an important part of our meetings, and we show at least one or two a month."
"I can say that while watching Insights, many of the students had their heads nodding as if in agreement or understanding of what they were hearing. Some had tears in their eyes. It gave many of the students food for thought to reflect on."
--Melissa Mel, GSA Advisor, Apache Junction High School
"Our goal was to get the students to start talking and get moving to advocate for our LGBT students' rights. The conversations we had after watching the films were very powerful, and very personal. The discussion questions got a few of our quiet GSA members to contribute to the conversation. The reaction of the students was, 'What can we do, here and now?' I'm excited that the movie can stir the more shy students into action, or at least discussion!
The movies are always wonderful! They inspire such hope, action, and drive.
The movies inspired many students to possibly talk with their parents, or be a bit more open about themselves, or just a stronger voice of support for LGBT youth and families. We are also gaining momentum on some policy changes that we are attempting to get the administration to implement, as well as becoming a more visual presence on campus.
The Curriculum and Action Guides are wonderful. One of the teachers is considering showing the In The Family DVD to his classes. Many teachers would love to show them but are currently too worried about their jobs. A few bold teachers may still show the films anyway.
The movies are always wonderful! They inspire such hope, action, and drive. Thanks for making the DVDs -- I know my GSA is exceedingly grateful. More of our members show up when we are watching the Youth In Motion DVDs."
—Haley Hibbs, GSA President, Vintage High School
"These films have been a great way to explain some situations that might be very confusing. Many of the conversations we've had focused on the GSA members' real life experiences, and many of us who do not deal with the same situations are starting to think outside the box and see their peers in a new light of respect.
The films definitely light the spark that heats up our passion for helping the LGBT community. They are something that we would love to keep going as a GSA club tradition from now on."
—Katlyn Pavlica, GSA Member, West Hills High School
"I looked at the Curriculum Guide and adapted ideas from it, especially the background info and extension activities. I was looking for films that address transphobia and push students, particularly urban students of color, around transphobia and heterocentrism. I showed clips of the film in conjunction with many other activities throughout our unit. They seemed to like the clips I showed — they led to wonderful, fruitful, honest questioning and discussion of what it means to be intersex or transgender and how gender binary set-ups mess with people's freedom."
—Peer Helping Teacher, Balboa High School
"We hosted a four-week lunchtime short film festival where we showed several of the films, offered free popcorn, held discussions. The film festival attracted students who were not previously in GSA, encouraged more participation from our members, and sparked a discussion on transgender issues, which are not traditionally something we talk about.
We all really enjoyed the films, and the diversity of styles. Many people really appreciated that we had a springboard for discussion. We are now working toward using some of the films schoolwide."