Dfs21 Focus

Focus

With climate change making headlines daily, all eyes will be on policy makers, politicians, and activists as they converge in Glasgow for COP26, October 31 to November 12. COP26’s prevailing message is “Together for Our Planet.”

With this in mind, this year’s Focus program is pleased to partner with German filmmaker Irja Von Bernstorff and her Girls For Future, featuring four stories of young climate activists fighting for a better future in communities all over the world. We are also offering a return engagement of the popular What About Our Future?

These five stories come from near and far and will inspire action, showing students the power of a single voice and can be achieved when we come together with a common goal: a better future.

All films are suitable for Grades 5–12.
It is important for teachers to preview any film prior to showing to students.

  • Available October 4 to December 3, 2021
  • Book the film(s) for the week that coincides with your teaching
  • Each booking is one week long
  • Film(s) will be sent one week before selected week for preview and lesson prep
  • Film(s) will be sent with a link and controlled password
  • Multiple weeks may be booked
  • The last week to book is Monday, November 29, 2021
BOOK NOW

Questions? Please contact Elspeth Arbow, Docs For Schools Coordinator, at [email protected].

Visit COP26 to learn about COP and the goals of this year’s conference.


The Films

Fatous Fight Against Water Shortage

Fatou's Fight Against Water Shortage

  • Germany
  • 25
    Director:
  • Irja Von Bernstorff
    Subjects:
  • Civics
  • English
  • Environmental Science
  • Geography
  • Language
  • Politics
  • Science
  • Social Studies
  • World Issues

Increasingly long dry seasons in sub-Saharan Senegal are getting in the way of 14 year-old Fatoumata getting an education. Responsible for collecting water for her family, climate change is making it harder to do so. She must wait for the rain or travel hours to neighbouring villages to collect from their water tanks. Fatoumata takes the initiative to contact the Food and Agriculture Organization to help organize a more sustainable water source in her own village, improving the lives of everyone in her community.

Gagans Fight Against Air Pollution

Gagan's Fight Against Air Pollution

  • Germany
  • 25
    Director:
  • Irja Von Bernstorff
    Subjects:
  • Civics
  • English
  • Environmental Science
  • Geography
  • Language
  • Politics
  • Science
  • Social Studies
  • World Issues

Gagan’s fight against air pollution is personal: Punjab has the highest cancer rate in all of India and she has already developed a severe respiratory illness, despite being only 13 years old. She’s going head-to-head with local farmers to challenge the widely used method of crop burning and teaching the next generation that alternative ways of farming are possible.

Ninas Fight Against Plastic Waste

Nina's Fight Against Plastic Waste

  • Germany
  • 24
    Director:
  • Irja Von Bernstorff
    Subjects:
  • Civics
  • English
  • Environmental Science
  • Geography
  • Language
  • Politics
  • Science
  • Social Studies
  • World Issues

At 12 years old, Nina is a small but mighty young activist on the frontline of the fight against plastic in her community. Many Western countries send their plastic to East Java, Indonesia, where she lives, polluting their water, soil, and sky. When she discovers waste coming from Germany, England, the U.S., and even Canada, she decides to take a stand. She’s got a message for the politicians of the world: stop sending us your trash!

Sabyahs Fight Against Coal Mining

Sabyah's Fight Against Coal Mining

  • Germany
  • 25
    Director:
  • Irja Von Bernstorff
    Subjects:
  • Civics
  • English
  • Environmental Science
  • Geography
  • Language
  • Politics
  • Science
  • Social Studies
  • World Issues

Climate change denialism is rampant in Queensland, Australia but 11 year-old Sabyah sees its devastating effects every day. In a country where coal mining is one of the largest industries, Sabyah aims to educate peers and locals in an attempt to prevent the construction of the soon-to-be biggest coal mine in Australia and, in turn, help save the Great Barrier Reef.

What About Our Future

What About Our Future?

  • Canada
  • 24
    Directors:
  • Jamie Leigh Gianopolous
  • Cláudio Cruz
    Subjects:
  • Civics
  • English
  • Language
  • Media Arts
  • Science
  • World Issues

Fed up with the inaction over climate change, the Sustainabiliteens was formed by a group of highly motivated teens whose future on this planet is in jeopardy. Carving out their own spot in the global youth climate action movement, this group organized the largest environmental strike in Vancouver’s history, pressures politicians for policy change, and is devoted to educating other teens about environmental justice.


Live Webinar

Thursday, November 4, 10:00-11:00 a.m. ET
Click the button to join us live at 10:00am ET on November 4.

JOIN WEBINAR

Docs For Schools is pleased to offer a free webinar with Girls For Future film director Irja Von Bernstorff and subjects Nina from Nina’s Fight Against Plastic Waste AND Sabyah from Sabyah’s Fight Against Coal Mining. We’re excited that Sabyah will be joining us from Australia.

If you and your students are looking for more inspiration after viewing the films, you will all enjoy meeting these engaging and dynamic young activists live, with the opportunity to ask questions.

Students may submit questions in advance or live during the discussion. Advance questions can be sent to Lesley Sparks at [email protected]

To view Nina’s Fight Against Plastic Waste, Sabyah’s Fight Against Coal Mining or any other of the in-school Focus films, use the booking form at the top of this page (click BOOK NOW blue box).

Questions about booking? Please contact Elspeth Arbow at [email protected].


Online Cinema Screening

No longer the youngest, but the highest profile climate activist in the world, Greta Thunberg’s voice will be heard at COP26. As this year’s Focus docs introduce you to young activists from around the globe, we thought we should include the young woman whom we now know by one name—Greta.

  • As an online cinema booking, you will have a 48 hour viewing window (November 2-3)
  • Once booked, confirmation will be sent
  • On November 1, the link and password will be sent to you to view with your class
  • Limited streams available, so book soon!

To book, email Lesley Sparks at [email protected] with:

  • School Name
  • School Board
  • Grade
  • Number of students expected to view
I Am Greta

November 2 & 3 // I Am Greta

  • Canada
  • 102
    Director:
  • Nathan Grossman

Get ready to take on the world with teenage activist Greta Thunberg, the voice of conscience for a generation facing the climate crisis. Through never-before-seen footage, follow Thunberg on her journey from shy student in Sweden to her rise in prominence as a global environmental icon, sparked by her now-infamous one-person school protest outside the Swedish Parliament. Culminating with her extraordinary wind-powered voyage across the Atlantic Ocean to speak at the UN Climate Action Summit in New York, this exhilarating, all-access doc also charts the young activist's galvanizing impact as she inspires millions of people to take to the streets on behalf of the planet we love and share.


For supplementary content, check out the Docs For Schools TODAY Environment page for free, online web docs we have curated.

DOCS FOR SCHOOLS TODAY

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Additional support is provided by Patrick and Barbara Keenan Foundation, Donner Canadian Foundation, Pitblado Family Foundation, The McLean Foundation, and through contributions by individual donors.

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Founding Partner

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Presenting Partners

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Major Supporters

  • logo Celebrate Ontario
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