Monday, April 11, 2016

CIES Takes in The Whale

Classes from both of our locations recently went to the Cineplex Odeon at Eau Claire Market to see the Canadian documentary film, “The Whale.”  This film tells the real life story of a young orca that gets separated from its pod in Nootka Sound, (a fjord on the west side of Vancouver Island), and about the subsequent debate about what level of human interaction with this seemingly lonely, curious, and “friendly” killer whale was simultaneously viewed as either necessary, harmful, or somewhere in between based upon a variety of perspectives. The perspectives come from numerous groups including: local residents, biologists, a local aboriginal group, and representatives from the federal government’s Department of Fisheries and Oceans.

For those of us who were able to stay after the movie, Dr. Peter Ewins,  a World Wildlife Fund zoologist, was on hand to answer students’ questions, engage in interactive activities with the attending students, and showcase whale teeth and baleen from various whales that can be found off the coasts of Canada.

The free screening of this film was made possible through the support of Bow Valley College, and the non profit organization Reel Canada which “celebrates Canada through film,”  and has a program entitled, “Our Films in our Schools,” which we were able to participate in. This program has a stated goal of “[ing] teachers and students across Canada organize festivals of Canadian film in their schools, and integrate Canadian film into the classroom.”

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