Warner School to Show Going on 13 Documentary as Part of Human Development Series

Going on 13 graphicFree Film Screening, Discussion Explores the Life Experiences of Adolescent Girls
The University of Rochester’s Warner School of Education will host a community screening and discussion of the documentary film Going on 13 as part of a film series exploring human development across the life span on Thursday, Feb. 2 from 6 to 8 p.m. The free film screening will begin at 6 p.m. in Dewey Hall, Room 1-101, and will be followed by a discussion of the documentary guided by a panel of experts and practitioners in the fields of human development and adolescence at 7:15 p.m.

Going on 13 is an award-winning documentary by filmmakers Dawn Valadez and Kristy Guevara-Flanagan that chronicles the complex lives of four diverse pre-teen girls growing up in urban America and their journey to womanhood. Following Ariana, Isha, Rosie, and Esmeralda over a four-year period, the film gives viewers the opportunity to see what real girls experience as they negotiate the time between childhood and becoming young women.

The film, which has aired on PBS stations and screened at a number of film festivals and universities across the country, incorporates a mix of interviews with each girl, cinema vérité, and stop-motion animation to tell the girls’ stories as they experience life’s changes and choices and leave childhood behind. These stories will present an opportunity for educators to witness the strengths of different home experiences, for parents to remember the things that make them laugh and the things that make them proud, for students to challenge assumptions about a right way to grow up, and for everyone to relive this time of confidence versus doubt and acceptance versus rejection.

“In our current culture, adolescence is constructed as a time of change and challenges,” says Joyce Duckles, Warner School doctoral candidate who is leading the human development film series. “Following these four girls for four years helps us consider what it means today to be a girl and a young woman, to grow up in an urban context, and to navigate relationships across school and home.”

The panel discussion, moderated by Dena Phillips Swanson, associate professor in human development at the Warner School, will follow the showing, providing insight on the film from multiple perspectives. Panelists will include Warner School alumnus Brian Bailey ’09 (PhD), assistant professor in adolescent education at Nazareth College; Laura Rebell Gross, co-founder and president of Young Women’s College Prep Charter School of Rochester; and Imani Monroe, a 15-year-old student from East High School and founding member of the Leadership Team for the Rochester Participatory Educational Research Collaborative (RPERC). 

“The filmmakers who made Going on 13 are adept at capturing the complexities of pre-adolescence, identifying the challenges of growing up and celebrating the resiliency of young women as they navigate biological, socioeconomic, psychosocial, and cultural dynamics of being a tween in the 21st century,” says Bailey. “I think it will spark some important discussions.”

Additional film showings and discussions taking place this year as part of the human development film series will extend beyond the beginning and adolescent stages of human development to focus on the early adulthood and aging stages. The film series is free and open to the public.

A sign language interpreter will be provided for the event. For other special accommodations or questions, please contact the Warner Academic Support Office at (585) 276-5405 or by e-mail at help@warner.rochester.edu. Parking on River Campus is $3 per car. Please stop by the information booth on Wilson Boulevard for parking instructions.
For more information on the Feb. 2 event, please visit the Warner School’s Facebook page or website at www.warner.rochester.edu, or follow the Warner School on Twitter. To learn more about Going on 13, please visit www.goingon13.com/index.html.
About the Warner School of Education
Founded in 1958, the University of Rochester’s Warner School of Education offers master’s and doctoral degree programs in teaching and curriculum, school leadership, higher education, counseling, human development, and educational policy. The Warner School of Education offers a new accelerated option for its EdD programs that allows eligible students to earn a doctorate in education in as few as three years part time while holding a professional job in the same field. The Warner School of Education is recognized both regionally and nationally for its tradition of preparing practitioners and researchers to become leaders and agents of change in schools, universities, and community agencies; generating and disseminating research; and actively participating in education reform. 

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Media Contact: Theresa Danylak
(585) 275-0777; (585) 278-6273 (cell)

Tags: adolescent education, adolescents, human development, Joyce Duckles