Shine Global offers FREE curricula and resources to help teachers and educators use the films in the classroom and in other educational settings.

Many curricula are standards-based for the US.

We welcome all feedback to these films and materials – reach out to

Onyx Family Dinner

CATEGORIES:  2021, racial justice, mental health, school curriculum bias, Black hair and hair discrimination, social activism in sports, urban gardening and sustainability, body positivity and self-esteem, social activism

“Onyx Family Dinner” follows the Onyx family, a warm, creative and supportive Black family as they share their passion for learning about the world and encouraging families to engage with each other. Each episode they sit down to dinner with a new guest to have meaningful discussions about what’s going on in their lives and important topics such as mental health, school curriculum bias, Black hair and hair discrimination, social activism in sports, urban gardening and sustainability, body positivity and self-esteem, and how to be a changemaker.

Running Time: 8 episodes, each approximately 15 minutes
Rating: Recommended for families of all ages


The Harvest (La Cosecha)

CATEGORIES: 2011, Agriculture, Labor, Children, Latinx, US

Zulema, Perla, and Victor are three American child migrant farmworkers who struggle to preserve their childhoods while helping their families survive by picking the food we all eat. Directed by U Roberto Romano and Executive Produced by Eva Longoria.
Running Time: 80 minutes
Rating: Recommended for ages 10 and up


CATEGORIES:  2013, Academy Award Winners & Nominees, Chicano Studies, Short Films, Women’s Studies, Education, Directed by Women, Immigration

Academy Award® Winner for Best Documentary Short, Inocente is an inspiring coming of age story of a 15-year-old girl in California. Though homeless and undocumented, she refuses to give up on her dream of being an artist. Directed by Sean Fine and Andrea Nix Fine.

Running Time: 40 minutes
Rating: Recommended for ages 10 and up for some descriptions of domestic violence and thoughts of suicide.

*Companion arts workshops developed with DreamYard Project and the High Museum of Art in Atlanta.  See a video here.


The Election Effect

CATEGORIES: Civics, Bullying, US Election, Youth Activism

The 2016 election was unlike any we’ve seen in modern history. In its wake, a group of award-winning documentarians set out to chronicle what the results meant to students around the country. The result: The Election Effect, Webby-nominated five-part documentary series that showcases life for the next generation of voters.

Running Time: 40 minutes
Rating: Recommended for middle-school and up



CATEGORIES: 2016, Swaziland, Storytelling, Animation, HIV/AIDS, Orphans, Resilience, Directed by Women

Five Swazi orphaned children turn past trauma into creative fuel for an original collective fairytale in which they send a young girl on a dangerous quest. This genre-defying film weaves an animated hero’s journey with poetic documentary scenes to create an inspiring tale of perseverance. Directed by Aaron Kopp and Amanda Kopp.

Running Time: 76 minutes
Rating: Recommended for ages 9 and up

Tre Maison Dasan

Adolescence, Criminal Justice, EVOD Collection, Law, Psychology

An intimate view of childhood through the eyes of three boys – Tre, Maison, and Dasan themselves – whose lives are complicated by having a parent in prison. Following their interweaving trajectories through boyhood, and directly through their perspectives, the film is an exploration of relationships and separation, masculinity, and coming of age when a parent is behind bars.

Running Time: 94 minutes
Rating: Recommended for high-school and up

The Eagle Huntress

CATEGORIES: 2016, Mongolia, Children & Young Adult, Sports, Gender, Traditional Culture

The Eagle Huntress follows Aisholpan, a 13-year-old girl, as she trains to become the first female in twelve generations of her Kazakh family to become an eagle hunter, and rises to the pinnacle of a tradition that has been handed down from father to son for centuries. Directed by Otto Bell.

Running Time: 87 minutes
Rating: G (recommended for ages 8 and up)

War / Dance

CATEGORIES: 2007, Adolescence & Coming of Age, Arts, Culture, & Sports, Global Perspectives, Peace & Conflicts, Uganda, Oscar-Nominated

This Academy Award®-nominated and Emmy Award®-winning documentary follows three children who triumph over civil war and the Lord’s Resistance Army, finding hope in the future by competing in Uganda’s national music and dance festival. Directed by Sean Fine and Andrea Nix Fine.

Running Time: 90 minutes
Rating: PG-13 for some thematic material involving descriptions of war atrocities

1 Way Up

CATEGORIES:  2015, Urban Studies, Europe, Education, Children & Young Adult, Sports, Directed by Women

Tre and Quillan, two teenage boys on the road to the BMX World Championships, hope to escape one of the toughest gang neighborhoods in London with the only thing they have — a bike.  Directed by Amy Mathieson.

Running Time: 64 minutes
Rating: PG (recommended for ages 8 and up)

*Companion arts workshops developed with The LAMP.

The Wrong Light

CATEGORIES: 2017, Asian Studies, Children & Young Adult, Criminal & Law, Family Relations, Southeast Asian Studies, Cinema Studies, Directed by Women

Exploring the dark side of child advocacy, we follow the mystery of two Thai girls whose parents supposedly sold them into sex work only to discover that the story was a lie fabricated by the advocate who claims to have rescued them. The girls decide to fight back to reclaim their identities despite the risk of losing everything. Directed by Josie Swantek & Dave Adams.

Running Time: 80 minutes
Rating: Recommended for ages 13 and up for some thematic material involving descriptions of sex work and sexual abuse

Dancing in Jaffa

CATEGORIES: 2014, Israel-Palestine Conflict, Peace Studies, Dance, Children & Young Adult, Directed by Women

Pierre Dulaine, an internationally renowned ballroom dancer, fulfills a life-long dream when he takes his program, Dancing Classrooms, back to his city of birth, Jaffa. Over a ten-week period, Pierre teaches 10-year-old Palestinian-Israeli and Jewish- Israeli children to dance and compete together. Directed by Hilla Medalia

Running Time: 88 minutes
Rating: Recommended for ages 12 and up

Virtually Free

CATEGORIES: 2020, Juvenile Justice, Criminal Justice, Arts Education, Activism, Race Relations, US

Every year about 300,000 kids are confined in juvenile detention in the US. 70-80% percent of those detained will be re-arrested within 3 years. The film follows three teens in a Richmond detention center, who are offered the chance to become activists speaking truth to power. Participating in a local arts organizations’ program, they are taught by different artists to deliver their powerful, authentic messages to the public, law enforcement, and government officials using their art, including a VR jail cell they’ve helped create. Directed by André Robert Lee.

Running Time: 40 minutes
Rating: Recommended for ages 12 and up

Curriculum currently available when booking a screening and workshop.