[editor's note: The LIE editors received this request via email, and are passing it along to you.]
I am a Coordinating Producer for Nick News with Linda Ellerbee. Nick News is an Emmy award-winning kids’ television news program that airs on Nickelodeon. We produce news and feature stories for kids between the ages of 11 -14. For more info and sample episodes, please see our website atwww.nicknews.com .
We are reaching out to middle schools and organizations across the country in hopes of finding kids to highlight in an upcoming Nick News show. The episode is tentatively called “Secrets of the Intentional Outsider.” For this show, we will be profiling middle school kids (11-14 yrs) who don’t fit into a particular social group, and are perhaps identified by their peers as non-conformists or outsiders, but they don’t care or necessarily view themselves that way.
We try hard to have diversity in our shows, and we are now specifically looking for an African American kid who may fit into one of these categories:
*A kid (11-14 yrs) that is an outsider among peers, but has a focus such as music, art, science, computer programming, hobby etc. and that focus has allowed the kid to not be concerned about fitting into a social group.
*A kid that is a non-conformist in the way s/he dresses (ie funky clothes, all black clothes/make up, dyed hair)
*A kid that is an introvert and is quite comfortable being alone, although peers may think s/he is lonely (ie, a kid who truly prefers to read at lunch rather than socialize with peers.)– A ‘lone wolf’ of sorts.
*A kid with interests that others consider “geeky” or “nerdy” who is not one of a group of similar kids.
We understand that most middle school kids try hard to fit in. But we also know there are kids out there who just don’t fit in, but are ok with that, and we want to celebrate that too. They’d be kids who are very comfortable with who they are and have a strong sense of self. And while they may certainly feel the pain of being on the outside from time to time, they aren’t willing to sacrifice who they truly are just to be part of the larger group.
Do you know any kids like this? Do you think s/he would be willing to talk to me about it? We want this show to be about tolerance – and about celebrating individuality – and hopefully it will make kids watching think twice before judging or bullying or teasing the often misunderstood kid.
Feel free to pass along to anyone else you think may know some one. I can be contacted by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or phone 609-279-0863.
Thanks so much!