Educational Media Reviews Online conseille "l'école nomade"

Post date: Mar 15, 2012 10:19:32 AM

Highly Recommended

School on the Move 2008Distributed by National Film Board of Canada, 1123 Broadway, Suite 307, New York, NY 10010; 800-542-2164Produced by Emmanuelle WielezynskiDirected by Michel DebatsDVD, color, 50 min.College - Adult Anthropology, Education Reviewed by Mary Northrup, Metropolitan Community College-Maple Woods, Kansas City, Missouri Highly Recommended Date Entered: 1/12/2010

In the remote reaches of Siberia, among the nomadic Evenk people, children still attend school. They learn to read and write, their papers are displayed, and they use computers to research and connect to the wider world. Whereas in the past, many of these children were sent to boarding schools where they lost their language and culture, now they attend in a tent set up next to the tents of their own families.

This film is as visually stunning as it is captivating in its portrayal of the life of the Evenk. Shots of the reindeer, which are all-important as sources of transportation and food, as well as shots of the snow-covered landscape of the taiga, bring home the reality of this culture. Viewers are taken inside and outside tents to see many daily activities. In all cases, the children help or at least watch, which is their way of learning to carry on the lifestyle and culture of their people.

Hearing the parents talk about the importance of education for their children, plus their desire for the children to come back to the taiga to live, is very moving. Watching the mothers and the teacher help the children as they read and write points up the value they place on learning.

French and Evenk languages are used throughout, with English subtitles, which lend authenticity to the film. The French anthropologist who set up and found funding for the school and who has been studying the Evenk for 10 years, is interviewed and provides background information on this cultural group.

The awesome landscape, the beautiful children, the conflict of cultures, the passing on of traditions, the nomadic culture – all of these combine to create a wonderful film. College students in teacher training programs would be a prime audience, as would anthropology students or anyone studying Russia or Siberia. Public libraries may want to consider purchase for a general adult audience. This is truly one of those films that everyone should see and from which everyone would find something in which to delight.


  • Merit Award for Educational Value, Montana CINE International, The Last Best Film Fest 2008
  • Golden Drum Award-Khanty, Mansyisk Festival 2008-Russia
  • Chris Statuette, Columbus International Film and Video Festival 2008
  • Special Jury Prize, Festival du Film d’Education d’Evreux 2008