Films for Change

Films for Change

Films for Change is a bilingual NFB program designed to integrate documentary films on the environment into secondary level education.

Films for Change Pedagogical Template

A comprehensive Teacher's Guide is available to help students develop media literacy and environmental skills as well as to create an opportunity for students to implement environmental action projects in the classroom. The Films for Change Teacher's Guide has quick links to curricula in provinces and territories across Canada and provides teachers with options for assessment strategies.
The Films for Change II Teacher's Guide explores the risks of monoculture—growing a single crop on the same land, year in, year out—and the benefits of sustainable and organic farming.

Free online NFB Resources for Teachers

The Footprints Web site is a free online NFB resource for teachers that addresses the environment and how we live. Discover part of the National Film Board of Canada's collection that documents the relationship between environmental questions and the social and cultural lives of Canadians.

Waterlife is another free NFB Web site available to teachers. Waterlife is an interactive journey through the last great supply of fresh water on earth. Visit this Web site with your students to tour the Great Lakes and learn about the issues affecting the waters from Lake Superior to the Atlantic Ocean.

The Films for Change program was developed in partnership with LEARN QUEBEC and the McGill University Centre for Educational Leadership. Its aim is to create awareness of global environmental issues and provide opportunities to take action on environmentally themed projects in the classroom. In the process, students will develop media and environmental literacy skills.

Films for Change is a Featured Program on the Canadian school portal for the Vancouver 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games. These programs foster the development of sports, culture and sustainability for future generations.

  • An Ecology of Hope
    2001|1 h 24 min

    A documentary portrait of ecologist Pierre Dansereau, the film takes us from Baffin Island to New York City, from the Gaspé Peninsula to Brazil. At each stop on this world tour, we hear his story and witness landscapes of breathtaking beauty.

  • The Weight of the World
    campus 2003 | 51 min
    This fascinating documentary looks at obesity. Stockholm’s Dr. Stephan Rossner, an obesity specialist, proves beyond doubt that obesity is a man-made epidemic. Super-sized fast foods and a $12 billion ad industry are proving to be lethal when mixed with a car-dominated culture, urban sprawl and labour-saving technologies. This film was launched by the NFB and the CBC in partnership with the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada and Physical and Health Education Canada. !
  • St. Lawrence: Stairway to the Sea

    In this spectacular feature-length documentary, oceanographer Jacques Cousteau and an NFB crew sail up the St. Lawrence River to the Great Lakes on board the specially equipped vessel, the Calypso. They explore the countryside from their helicopter and plumb the depths of the waters in their diving saucer. They encounter shipwrecks, the Manicouagan power dam, Niagara Falls, the locks of the St. Lawrence Seaway and an underwater chase with caribou.

  • Cries from the Deep
    1981|1 h 36 min

    This documentary records the journey undertaken by Jacques Cousteau, his 24-member team, and an NFB film crew to explore the Grand Banks of Newfoundland, one of the world's richest fishing areas. They discover shipwrecks, film icebergs and observe beluga whales, humpback whales and harp seals. The film also includes a fascinating sequence showing Calypso divers freeing a calf whale entrapped in a fishing net.

  • Worst Case Scenario
    2001|43 min

    This documentary looks at the risks of a proposed sour gas well near Clearwater River, in Rocky Mountain House, Alberta. Farmers and landowners all share concerns. Residents opposed to the well fear a deadly hydrogen sulphide leak. Shell Canada says it must drill to meet energy needs. When mediation talks break down, both sides anxiously await a ruling from Alberta's Energy and Utilities Board.

  • Being Caribou
    2004|1 h 12 min

    In this feature-length documentary, husband and wife team Karsten Heuer (wildlife biologist) and Leanne Allison (environmentalist) follow a herd of 120,000 caribou on foot across 1500 km of Arctic tundra. In following the herd's migration, the couple hopes to raise awareness of the threats to the caribou's survival. Along the way they brave Arctic weather, icy rivers, hordes of mosquitoes and a very hungry grizzly bear. Dramatic footage and video diaries combine to provide an intimate perspective of an epic expedition.

  • Uranium
    1990|48 min

    This documentary looks at the hazards of uranium mining in Canada. Toxic and radioactive waste pose environmental threats while the traditional economic and spiritual lives of the Aboriginal people who occupy this land have been violated. Given our limited knowledge of the associated risks, this film questions the validity of continuing the mining operations.

  • Crapshoot: The Gamble with Our Wastes
    2003|52 min

    A hazardous mix of waste is flushed into the sewer every day. The billions of litres of water - combined with unknown quantities of chemicals, solvents, heavy metals, human waste and food - where does it all go? And what does it do to us? Filmed in Italy, India, Sweden, the United States and Canada, this bold documentary questions our fundamental attitudes to waste. Does our need to dispose of waste take precedence over public safety? What are the alternatives?