1. In the movie, Precious deals with at least 10 different issues. Identify at least 5 and discuss in detail. What is the issue, how does it play out in her life, how does it impact her, etc. (15 pts.). 1. She has a multitudes of issues. She was abused from the age of 3 by her father and her mother letting it happen. This appears to be when her mom started to resent her because the father wanted her more than the mother. The sexual abuse of her father caused her to have 2 children. The oldest has downs syndrome. When her father left, her mother started sexual abusing her. She was later in the movie diagnosed HIV positive, after learning the father had died from AIDS.
2. Poverty and hunger was an issue for her too. She would steal food to eat as she did in the chicken place. They were in living in Harlem on welfare and the mother received money for Precious and her daughter. The daughter lived with her mother’s mom and she would bring her over when the social worker would come for a visit.
3. Lack of education is another problem she had. She was reading at a 2nd grade level when you went to the alternative school called “Each One, Teach One”, but was now reading at a 7th grade level. In the movie she said she was going to graduate and the go to college. She was now looking toward the future.
4. Precious had low self-esteem because her mother was always telling her she was dumb, fat and that she could not learn anything. She seems to have gave up until she went to the alternative school. The old school appears to be just letting her pass without doing anything. She never talked in school, just sat there and no one seemed to care.
5. Having two children was also an problem at such a young age. The first one was born on the kitchen floor as her mother was “kicking her in the head.” She had no prenatal care. The second one she had in the hospital. Her mother never came to see her in the hospital and started to beat her when she returned home from the hospital. She then left and broke into the school because she had no place to go. Blu fond her a place to stay, in a halfway house so she could be with the baby and the continue her education. Blu wanted her to give the children up for adoption but Precious did not and was a good mother to her kids, reading to them every night.
2. In your opinion how well did the principal handle the situation? What did she do well, what did she not do well? What do you feel could have been done differently and how? Be specific and give example(s) from the movie (10 pts.). I think the principal was a little cold and uncaring, she never smiled and would speak at her not to her. She picked up the phone and started talking on it when Precious came in the room. She acted like she did not care about her. She was flat in tone most of the time and seemed to be bother by the fact that she had to talk to her. She expelled her when she found out she was pregnant.
She did go to her home and give her the information for the alternative education program but she did it by talking through the intercom not in person. She should have had a parent/child conference. She should have been insistent on talking to Precious’s mother instead of taking Precious answer that her mother could not come because she was busy. She should have call child protective services when she was pregnant for the second time. The principal almost yelled at her, she asked Precious “Is something going on at home? If so I want you to tell me right now!” She should have remained calm. Yelling at her would only get Precious to shut her out.
3. How does Precious deal with stress? What specific thing does she do? Give at least one example from the movie (10 pts.). Precious would pretend she was somewhere else when things were difficult for her. She did this when her father raped her, mother beat her and when she gave birth to her son. She would pretend she was famous and everyone wanted to be with her.
4. What did Blu (the teacher) focus on with the girls? What was her focus other than teaching them? (10 pts.). She tried to improve their self-esteem along with teaching them to read. Blu had them write in a journal daily. In addition, she had them introducing themselves and telling everyone something they were good at. Writing in the journal gave the students a way to express themselves and explore what they want to do with themselves. She took them to museum where the could see things the girls had never seen before. The class was like a support group for all the girls.
5. Do you feel this was effective? Explain your answer using specifics from the movie (10 pts.). Yes, I did feel this was effective for the girls. Because it made them face their fears. It gave them a safe place to tell about what was going on in their lives. In addition, it gave them a place to look to the future. 6. In your opinion how well did the Case worker handle the situation? What did she do well, what did she not do well? What do you feel could have been done differently and how? Be specific and give example(s) from the movie (10 pts.).
1. The caseworker was good at getting Precious to talk. She told her “you are in a safe place.” Precious told her about the abuse, but the case worker did not have her removed from the home in the beginning, she was not removed until she was in crisis and Blu good involved. This is where she and the daughter should have been removed from the home. She encouraged her to take about her home life.
2. At the end of the movie, when the mother wanted her and the children back in the house, the case worker was good at letting the mother just talk and “hang herself”. She should have stopped her from calling Precious names though. The mother said that Precious took her man, made him leave and she hated her because he wanted Precious and not her. After her husband left Precious had to “take care of her” because she had no one else to do it. This was a continuous of the sexual abuse but by her mother not her father. Her mother used the father leaving as a justification of the abuse she did to Precious.
7. What concepts discussed in class do you see played out in this movie? Identify and explain in detail at least 3 (15 pts.). (100 points total)
1. Precious was in denial for a lot of the movie about the abuse she was experiencing at home. She would pretend everything was fine when the caseworker would come to the house. At first she was in denial about being raped by her father. An example of this is when the principal asked her how she got pregnant, she answer “I had sex.”
2. When Precious was in crises after her mother beat her when she brought home the new baby. She left the house with the baby and ended up in the school with the baby. She had no cloth, diapers or anything else for the baby. This is when Blu got her removed from the home and into the halfway house.
3. I think she had PTSD because when her mom knocked her out by hitting her in the head, she had flash back to her father abusing her.
4. In the movie there are many examples of the Stage of Change, one example is:
Pre-contemplation In the school Each One, Teach One they first tested Precious to see where she was at in her education. Precious was in denial about her learning abilities because when she was taking to the principal she said she did good in school, she had good grades.
Contemplation When Blu had Precious try to read a book, Precious admitted that the words all looked alike.
Preparation When the students went to the museum, Precious stated she wanted her children to read and learn.
Action She moved into a halfway house and read to the baby everyday. She received a literacy rewards and a check because of her growth in learning. She went from 2nd grade education to 7th grade education.
Maintenance Continue school, to get GED and then to go to college.