Kids are like sponges, picking up what we put down whether we like it or not. In honour of International Women’s Day earlier this month, Netflix asked the #StreamTeam to consider what messages our kids receive from the female Netflix characters they connect with, and what impact they’ve had. Why? Because studies have shown that gender stereotypes have an impact on girls at a young age, and that role models from the entertainment they choose can have a lasting effect.
“You can’t be what you can’t see” — Marian Wright Edelman
My nine-year-old has a few favourite female characters that she likes to watch over and over:
- Stephanie, Olivia, Emma, Andrea and Mia from Lego Friends
- Claire from Trollhunters
- McKeyla, Camryn, Adrienne and Bryden from Project Mc2
She’s watched them alone, with her brother, and some with me and her dad, and I know when they’re on I don’t have to worry about tuning out. These are smart, strong, multi-talented characters who are just as comfortable with a paint brush as they are with a microscope. Many of the storylines have them standing up for the people and causes they believe in and saving the day — no damsels in distress here!
That’s not to say there aren’t shows I don’t want my young sponge to watch (left to her own devices — literally! — she’d watch all kinds of crap) but for the most part, I’m proud of her choices and comfortable with what she’s learning. Smart, strong, multi-talented — sounds just like my daughter! And I know she doesn’t just get it from me. 🙂
I receive special perks as a member of the Netflix #StreamTeam, however all opinions are my own.