On March 8, Hamlin students walked a mile down the hill to the Cowell Theater (Fort Mason) to watch films from the 15th Annual International Ocean Film Festival. The films provided inspiration and crucial information, a perfect fit for this year’s eco-theme focused on Ocean-Awareness.
The International Ocean Film Festival is:
Dedicated to using film as a medium to increase public awareness of the environmental, social, and cultural importance of marine ecosystems and foster a spirit of ocean stewardship, IOFF is now the premier venue in North America for ocean-related films.
Every year, IOFF produces an acclaimed festival of ocean-themed films from all over the world that are largely unavailable to the general public. Themes range from marine science and industry to sports and adventure. We look for films that entertain, educate, and encourage active participation in ocean conservation.
Students watched several films from all over the world. Highlights included learning:
-How the bodies of pelicans dive into the water at 45mph
-About the declining population of sharks in the region of Borneo
-About coral restoration projects, and how coral is vital to the ocean’s ecosystem
-About Mexican fishing bats and their nightly excursions to feed on fish
-About the garbage patch in the Pacific Ocean and the need to stop using plastic
-That the use of sunscreen (with the chemical oxybenzone), has damaged 15% of ocean coral
-That 285,000 plastic bottles are thrown away every 2 minutes, many ending up in the ocean
-That overfishing is a significant problem that impacts both the ocean and people
Hamlin science teacher, Gillian Curran shares:
Among other things, everything the films talked about completely aligns with what our 6th graders are studying in science right now, which was very cool. I’m so glad all of the girls had the chance to see them!
Towards the end of the program, Grade 7 students Avery, Dani, Helena, and Allie, were invited on stage to speak about “Strawbucks,” a film they made for the student section of the festival. The film focuses on the need to stop our use of plastic straws to help the environment. The students answered questions from a packed audience, speaking about the filmmaking process, and what ignited their work. Their film is showing this Sunday, March 11th at 10am.
Below is a video clip of the girls on stage:
To learn more about the International Ocean Film Festival, please visit: http://intloceanfilmfest.org/