This animated short is the tale of a man roused from the torpor of his TV viewing by the sound of chainsaws whining their way through neighbourhood trees! Harold has to do something, and how he does it is the subject of this film. It's a story that any citizen might well ponder. After all, Harold is the familiar non-hero that everyone knows.
This short film was an experiment in using video recordings and closed circuit television to stimulate social action in a poor Montreal neighbourhood. A citizen's committee filmed people's concerns and then played back the tapes for the community. Upon recognizing their common problems, people began to talk about joint solutions. It proved an important and effective method of promoting social change.
On September 9, 2002, a scheduled appearance by former Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu sparked heated debate at Montreal's Concordia University. By the end of the day, the "Concordia riot" had made international news, from CNN to Al-Jazeera. This film documents the fallout from that eventful day, following three young campus activists as they negotiate the most formative year of their lives. Filmmakers Ben Addelman and Samir Mallal jump into the fray with street-smart bravado and a handheld camera. Buoyed by the songs of hip-hop artist Buck 65, this film offers a tonic reflection on the current state of Canadian student activism and the enduring value of tolerance.
This documentary presents two young women from Halifax who are organizing rock concerts to raise money for the group Eastcoast Against Racism. Bronwen and Yaffa believe that the universal language of music will help unite the community. At the same time, they struggle to renew their friendship with Scott, a former Ku Klux Klan member. This moving film is set against a vibrant soundtrack of punk and rap music.
This short documentary follows students from Toronto's Jesse Ketchum School as they take steps towards the greening of their schoolyard. Along the way they get how-to advice and inspiration from kids across the country; from Pauline Public School, where students raised $10,000, to Broadacres School, where a family of wild ducks found a home in their pond.
A Crack in the Pavement is a two-part video set that shows children, teachers and parents how they can work together to 'green' their school grounds and make positive changes in their communities
This short documentary shows initiatives kids take to transform bare pavement into dream schoolyards. Some grow trees for shade, and vegetables for a food bank. Others build a greenhouse or a rooftop garden, while others yet construct a courtyard pond as an outdoor classroom and refuge for wildlife.
A Crack in the Pavement is a two-part video set that shows children, teachers and parents how they can work together to 'green' their school grounds and make positive changes in their communities.
At the age of 5, Hannah Taylor spotted her first homeless person in the back alleys of Winnipeg. This experience not only troubled her, but it drove her to do nothing less than change the world. The Ladybug Foundation, the charity Hannah helped establish, has raised over a million dollars to date. With her huge heart and can-do attitude, she preaches a simple message of "Share a little of what you have and always care about others." As this short documentary proves, we all have a lot to learn from Hannah's story.
Anne Marie Nakagawa's documentary examines what it means to have a background of mixed ancestries that cannot be easily categorized. By focusing on 7 Canadians who have one parent from a European background and one of a visible minority, she attempts to get at the root of what it means to be multi-ethnic in a world that wants each person to fit into a single category.
Finding a satisfactory frame of reference in our 'multicultural utopia' turns out to be more complex than one might think. Between: Living in the Hyphen offers a provocative glimpse of what the future holds: a departure from hyphenated names towards a celebration of fluidity and being mixed.
This short film is a series of vignettes of life in Saint-Henri, a Montreal working-class district, on the first day of school. From dawn to midnight, we take in the neighbourhood’s pulse: a mother fussing over children, a father's enforced idleness, teenage boys clowning, young lovers dallying - the unposed quality of daily life.
This animated short deals with the difficult subject of antipersonnel land mines. Each year, hundreds of men, women and children are wounded or killed by these land mines. This film reveals the hideous nature of these weapons along with the complicity of the industrial nations.
This short cartoon tells the story of a bear who didn’t believe in Christmas. His main problem with this most magical of holidays? Too many Santas. How would he ever recognize the real one? Alone, out of a job, he goes to drown his sorrows, but back in his lonely room, for all his doubts, the Christmas spirit makes a surprise call.
Economist Armine Yalnizyan offers a radically honest and deliciously sweet review of our absurdly dysfunctional economic system and what we must do in order to survive and thrive in the 21st century.
Listen to the full audio interview with Armine Yalnizyan
Part of THE CURVE, a collection of social distancing stories that bring us together. Enjoy more works from this series here .
Ages 11 to 17
Civics/Citizenship - Citizen Responsibilities
Science - Environmental Science
Social Studies - Environmental Challenges
Discuss with the class why it is effective to have a group of people, rather than one person, fighting for a cause. As a class or in small groups, find a cause you think is worth fighting for, either in your own school or in your local town. Students record the challenges they face as they work their way towards making a difference. If teaching at the grade 6 level, use the following link for lesson plan ideas. Upper grade teachers may refer to this link and modify ideas to make grade appropriate.