LEADERSHIP IN CINEMA
(Based on a true story)
Submitted by: Pam McDonald
Audience Rating: PG 13
Studio: Paramount Pictures
Runtime: 136 minutes
Materials: VCR or DVD (preferred), television or projection system, Wildland Fire Leadership Values and Principles handouts (single-sided), notepads, writing utensils
Objective: Students will identify Wildland Fire Leadership Values and Principles illustrated within Coach Carter and discuss leadership lessons learned with group members or mentors.
Basic Plot: “In 1999, Ken Carter, a successful sporting goods store owner, accepts the job of basketball coach for his old high school in a poor area of Richmond, CA, where he was a champion athlete. As much dismayed by the poor attitudes of his players as well as their dismal play performance, Carter sets about to change both. He immediately imposes a strict regime typified in written contracts that include stipulations for respectful behavior, a dress code and good grades as requisites to being allowed to participate. The initial resistance from the boys is soon dispelled as the team under Carter's tutelage becomes an undefeated competitor in the games. However, when the overconfident team's behavior begins to stray and Carter learns that too many players are doing poorly in class, he takes immediate action. To the outrage of the team, the school and the community, Carter cancels all team activities and locks the court until the team shows acceptable academic improvement. In the ensuing debate, Carter fights to keep his methods, determined to show the boys that they need to rely on more than sports for their futures and eventually finds he has affected them more profoundly than he ever expected.” (Synopsis from amazon.com)
Cast of Main Characters:
Samuel L. Jackson
Coach Ken Carter
Various avenues can be pursued depending upon the facilitator’s intent. At a minimum, students can identify the Wildland Fire Leadership Values and Principles that are illustrated in the film. Students should be less concerned with how many principles they view within the film and more concerned with how the principles they do recognize can be used in their self development as a leader.
The film can be viewed in its entirety or by clip selection depending on facilitator intent and time schedules. Another method is to have the employee(s) view the film on his/her and then hold the discussion session.
The DVD version of the film includes a 20-minute interview with Coach Carter.
Full-film Facilitation Suggestion:
When opting for the full-film method, the facilitator should determine a good breaking point near the middle of the film.
Review the Wildland Fire Leadership Values and Principles with students. 2.
Advise students to document instances within the film that illustrate/violate the Wildland Fire Leadership Values and Principles on the handout provided. 3.
Break students into small discussion groups.
Show students Coach Carter.
Break. (Suggestion: After Coach Carter announces to the team that they will be playing in the Bayhill Holiday Tournament and right before the dance—counter approximately 1:00:40) 6.
Begin the guided discussion.
Provide a short synopsis with some “ticklers” to pay attention before beginning the rest of the film. 8.
Resume the film.
Have students discuss their findings and how they will apply leadership lessons learned to their role...
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