Film Documentaries

 


Click on a year:

2003 | 2004 | 2005 | 2006 | 2007 | 2008 | Special projects

All Wilderness Way (WW) documentaries are filmed by Paul, Lee and Tina Berensmeier. Purchase information follows the last film description.

................................

 

2008

SECRET SALMON SITES III - 2008
In the winter of 2007 twenty-four Lagunitas School students dared to sign up for Paul Berensmeier’s "Secret Salmon Sites" electives.  Two classes of twelve set our with five digital camcorders.  They created a "no-holds-barred" film documentary of an exciting four month journey together.  As the kids said, "We dare you to follow us. . . ."  45 minutes.

NATIVE AMERICAN FLUTE (MIDDLE SCHOOL ELECTIVE) - 2008
In the Spring of 2008 ten Lagunitas School students signed up for Paul
Berensmeier's Native American Flute Elective class.  In honor of our
school's unique relationship with the salmon (coho salmon spawn within 100
ft. of us in Larsen Creek), we decided to call ourselves the "Singing Salmon
Flute Circle."  Inspired by flute walks to Roys Redwoods and the Thorner
Preserve, each student created their own song and performed it at the flute
concert.  This film documents our journey together.  37 minutes.

STEELHEAD IN THE CLASSROOM (SIC) (MIDDLE SCHOOL) - 2008
Lagunitas School District Middle School
WW, in cooperation with Sally Hutchinson, developed a 7th grade curriculum
for the study of endangered steelhead trout.  The film begins with the egg
pickup at the Warm Springs Fish Hatchery in Geyserville, California. At
school the eggs were placed in a fish incubator built by Wilderness Way
during a workshop sponsored by Trout Unlimited. Students monitored their
growth from egg, to alevin, to fry with a video-flex camera and camcorder,
kept scientific journals, and did math and art as integral parts of the
project. 30 minutes. Note: The SIC program and student film is an annual
project for the 7th grade.

STEELHEAD IN THE CLASSROOM (MONTESSORI 3rd grade) - 2008
Thirty-four steelhead eggs were provided by the Warm Springs Fish Hatchery
and were placed in a fish incubator which was built by WW during a workshop
sponsored by Trout Unlimited. Sixteen 3rd grade students in the
Montessori science program of the Lagunitas School District, monitored their
growth, cared for the incubator and learned to use a magnifying glass, keep
a journal and label their drawings. They also did art work as part of this
project.
33 minutes.

ENVIRONMENTAL LIVING PROGRAM (MONTESSORI 4th & 5th grade) - 2008
Wilderness Way worked closely with Tomales Bay State Park to implement the
Environmental Living Program for the Montessori 4th & 5th grade class.
Students studied and experienced how traditional Native Americans lived off
the land prior to the arrival of other cultures.  Using hands on activities
they studied the culture, learned and practiced some of the skills of the
“Old Ways” that allowed native people to live sustainably for thousands of
years.  This film documents the culminating two day overnight at Indian
Beach in Tomales Bay State Park where the students went back in time and
lived what they learned.  41 minutes.

FILM PURCHASE
Your purchase of a DVD or video supports Wilderness Way’s ongoing efforts to bring children into their local environment and to have the children bring their environment into the school. We want each child to experience the physical, mental, and spiritual joy that only a close relationship to the earth can provide. We are gifted to have the beautiful San Geronimo Valley to provide particularly meaningful experiences and knowledge that builds character, values, integrity and responsibility.
Films are $20. each plus $4. mailing charge. Specify DVD or Video.
Contact: kokopauli@earthlink.net or 415-488-1964 or write:
Wilderness Way
P. O. Box 286
Lagunitas, CA 94938

Back to top

2007

STEELHEAD IN THE CLASSROOM (SIC) (MIDDLE SCHOOL) - 2007
Lagunitas School District Middle School
WW, in cooperation with Sally Hutchinson, developed a 7th grade curriculum for the study of endangered steelhead trout.  The film begins with the egg pickup at the Warm Springs Fish Hatchery in Geyserville, California. At school the eggs were placed in a fish incubator built by Wilderness Way during a workshop sponsored by Trout Unlimited. Students monitored their growth from egg, to alevin, to fry with a video-flex camera and camcorder, kept scientific journals, and did math and art as integral parts of the project. 20 minutes. Note: The SIC program and student film is an annual project for the 7th grade.

STEELHEAD IN THE CLASSROOM (MONTESSORI 3rd grade) - 2007
Thirty-four steelhead eggs were provided by the Warm Springs Fish Hatchery and were placed in a fish incubator which was built by WW during a workshop sponsored by Trout Unlimited. Sixteen 3rd grade students in the Montessori science program of the Lagunitas School District, monitored their growth, cared for the incubator and learned to use a magnifying glass, keep a journal and label their drawings. They also did art work as part of this project.
33 minutes.

WATERSHED MODEL (MONTESSORI 4 & 5) - 2007
San Geronimo Valley
Twenty-four students in the Montessori Program of the Lagunitas School Dist. studied the land forms and used the elements of contour lines, elevation, math, mini-model construction and a field trip to prepare them for building the 3’ x 6’ watershed model of their community -- the San Geronimo Valley. Working in groups the students, measured, traced, marked, cut, glued, sculpted, painted and then gathered in joy at the result.  Note the focus, patience,  cooperation, style, skill building the students exhibit throughout the project.  37 minutes.

THE WILDERNESS WAY MOVIE WITH K-2  - 2007
Twenty-nine K-2 students in the Montessori program of the Lagunitas School District, participated in WW's Environmental Education program partially funded by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.  This film documents many of the children's activities as they learn about wild coho salmon, steelhead trout, creeks, riparian habitat, erosion and plants and wildlife in the San Geronimo Valley watershed. 29 minutes.

SECRET SALMON SITES II - 2007
In the winter of 2006 nine Lagunitas School students dared to sign up for Paul Berensmeier’s "Secret Salmon Sites" elective.  They created a "no-holds-barred" film documentary of an exciting four month journey together.  As the kids said, "We dare you to follow us. . . ."  40 minutes.

CROUCHING HERON - JUMPING SALMON II - 2007
Lagunitas, California
The first major winter storm in 2004, in Marin County, California led to a record breaking run of coho salmon returning to their natal stream in the San Geronimo Valley to spawn - the final act of their three year life cycle. This documentary shows the Inkwells, a series of stepped pools, which are a barrier until filled to overflowing with rainwater. Soon salmon are seen jumping the pools, females digging nests, males battling, jacks interceding, bodies degenerating, and carcasses providing food for wildlife and nutrients for habitat. This film has been reedited with narration by Jean Berensmeier. 9 minutes.

FILM PURCHASE
Your purchase of a DVD or video supports Wilderness Way’s ongoing efforts to bring children into their local environment and to have the children bring their environment into the school. We want each child to experience the physical, mental, and spiritual joy that only a close relationship to the earth can provide. We are gifted to have the beautiful San Geronimo Valley to provide particularly meaningful experiences and knowledge that builds character, values, integrity and responsibility.
Films are $20. each plus $4. mailing charge. Specify DVD or Video.
Contact: kokopauli@earthlink.net or 415-488-1964 or write:
Wilderness Way
P. O. Box 286
Lagunitas, CA 94938

Back to top

2006

FIRST ANNUAL ENVIRONMENTAL ART SHOW - 2006
San Geronimo Valley
This is a documentary of 13 long time Valley residents whose livelihood is art which is inspired by their environment. Each artist hung two pieces Poets and musicians participated in the honoring during the reception. Later, the film played a role in teacher staff development. Students took tours of the art show with WW staff and learned about how these artists, their neighbors, see the outdoor world and express and translate what they see and feel into an art work. 31 minutes.

THE SAN GERONIMO VALLEY . . .  AN UNFINISHED JOURNEY - 2006
Paul Berensmeier has hundreds of hours of film footage about his adventures in the Valley.  This film includes the story of a fawn that came up and hugged his leg, the swirling, mating dance of newts, the Ink Wells hosting a lamprey eel and jumping salmon, antics of a squirrel harvesting buckeye nuts during a “bad acorn year”, the power of a Valley storm, :secret salmon sites, finding the “hidden  house” in Roys Redwoods and more.   45 minutes.

PARK ST. BRIDGE - 2006
Woodacre, CA  
This film documents the second County of Marin salmon restoration project on Woodacre Creek to remove an existing fish passage barrier. In its place is a new bridge over a natural channel, open-bottomed, arched culvert with a roughened ramp and series of rock weirs. Both juvenile and adult salmon will now have access up and down Woodacre Creek during high winter flows and low summer flows. It will also allow free flow of wood and sediment.

This documentary shows the final results of the construction and joyful installation of native plants with concluding ceremony and celebration by local students and members of the Woodacre community. This event was organized by WW in cooperation with the County of Marin. 13 minutes.

VALLEY VULTURES - 2006
WW teachers and staff have been watching Valley Vultures drying their huge six-foot wing spans in the Vulture Tree at Lagunitas School for over 40 years.  This film documents the Vulture's unique morning ritual of preening, drying, stretching, and preparing themselves for a new day. 18 minutes.  

VALLEY SQUIRRELS - 2006
WW artist/videographer Fred Berensmeier discovered squirrels eating buckeyes
in the family buckeye tree.  The ensuing film illustrates the squirrels amazing acrobatics and adaptability to harvest these huge nuts during a "bad acorn year."  Educational and humorous for all ages, especially enjoyable for grades
K-3.   15 minutes.

SECRET SALMON SITES (MIDDLE SCHOOL ELECTIVE) - 2006
Due to the success of their Steelhead-in-the-Classroom program at Lagunitas School, WW was asked to do an elective for Middle School students to research and discover secret spawning sites of the coho salmon throughout the unique San Geronimo Valley watershed.  Students used four WW digital camcorders to document ten field trips to "secret" locations.  48 minutes.

FILM PURCHASE
Your purchase of a DVD or video supports Wilderness Way’s ongoing efforts tobring children into their local environment and to have the children bring their environment into the school. We want each child to experience the physical, mental, and spiritual joy that only a close relationship to the earth can provide. We are gifted to have the beautiful San Geronimo Valley to provide particularly meaningful experiences and knowledge that builds character, values, integrity and responsibility.
Films are $20. each plus $4. mailing charge. Specify DVD or Video.
Contact: kokopauli@earthlink.net or 415-488-1964 or write:
Wilderness Way
P. O. Box 286
Lagunitas, CA 94938

Back to top

2005

CROUCHING HERON - JUMPING SALMON - 2005
Lagunitas, California
The first major winter storm in 2004, in Marin County, California led to a record breaking run of coho salmon returning to their natal stream in the San Geronimo Valley to spawn - the final act of their three year life cycle. This documentary shows the Inkwells, a series of stepped pools, which are a barrier until filled to overflowing with rainwater. Soon salmon are seen jumping the pools, females digging nests, males battling, jacks interceding, bodies degenerating, and carcasses providing food for wildlife and nutrients for habitat. A lamprey eel, merganser ducks, hermit thrush, dipper, turkey vulture and great blue heron participate in the spectacle. 14 minutes.

SOMETHING FISHY IS GOING ON HERE! - 2005
A film documentary of Laura Honda’s 4th grade class at Oak Manor School Fairfax, California After making Trout Crossing signs for Fairfax bridges, to educate and raise community awareness, Laura Honda’s 4th grade class moved on to:
•  The Steelhead-in-the-Classroom program.
•  Making Wishing Poles.
•  A field trip to release trout fry at Warm Springs Hatchery.
•  Letter to Senator Barbara Boxer regarding Karuk tribe plight.
•  Making steelhead trout chocolates for fund raising.

This film, by WW instructor Paul Berensmeier, was premiered at Open House in May 2005. Laura Honda is an exceptional teacher and has won several awards.
This film reflects her love of teaching and creativity.  40 minutes.

RAISING STEELHEAD EGGS IN THE CLASSROOM - 2005
Lagunitas School District Middle School
WW, in cooperation with Sally Hutchinson, a gifted Middle School teacher in the Lagunitas School Dist., developed a 7th grade curriculum for the study of endangered steelhead trout. The film begins with the egg pickup at the Warm Springs Fish Hatchery in Geyserville, California. At school the eggs were placed in a fish incubator built by Wilderness Way during a workshop sponsored by Trout Unlimited. Students monitored their growth from egg, to alevin, to fry with a video-flex camera and camcorder, kept scientific journals, and did math and art as integral parts of the project. 20 minutes.

DAYLIGHTING WOODACRE CREEK (Middle School) - 2005
An Historical Project
Woodacre, CA
In recent decades human activities pushed Woodacre Creek’s spawning coho salmon to the edge of extinction. The most serious misjudgment occurred 30 + years ago when a 177’ long culvert was buried in the stream bed in order to accommodate two tennis courts and a swimming pool. Instantly, 1/2 mile of upstream spawning habitat was lost because fish could not navigate the poorly placed culvert. In 2005 a $325.000 grant allowed agencies, organizations and children from Lagunitas School to join together to day light and restore Woodacre Creek. A fish friendly culvert was placed under Crescent Road and students created an extensive riparian habitat by installing native plants. This project stands as a monument to what a concerned citizenry, informed students and knowledgeable government can accomplish in order to protect and nurture endangered fish for future generations. This 40 minute film documents this project and shows the two eighth grade classes, public agencies and organizations that participated. Curriculum included science, social studies, math, restoration, art. and poetry.  42 minutes. 2003-05.   Scenes include:

•  8th grade students original site visit 2003-04
•  Fish unfriendly culvert
•  Construction of fish friendly culvert
•  Caring for and planting native plants
•  Installing Salmon Crossing signs
•  Student art projects: fish mobiles, drawings, a quilt, salmon cookies
   and Wishing Poles
•  Community celebration 2005

CUB SCOUTS MOVIE SAN GERONIMO VALLEY
Cub Scouts Pack 1
On a rainy winter day in 2006 Cub Scout Pack 1 from Miill Valley learned about coho salmon in the San Geronimo Valley. Cub Scouts and their parents saw a film showing the spectacular spawning run of the previous winter and then toured the Valley starting with the Inkwells -- stair stepped rock pools which are a barrier to spawning migration until the winter rains. Then a walk along Lagunitas Creek -- on to the fish ladder at Roys Pools -- a visit to the headwaters at Woodacre Creek -- back to the salmon bridge over Larsen Creek and finally a visit to the Tracking Box and Environmental Education Center. 30 minutes.

FILM PURCHASE
Your purchase of a DVD or video supports Wilderness Way’s ongoing efforts to bring children into their local environment and to have the children bring their environment into the school. We want each child to experience the physical, mental, and spiritual joy that only a close relationship to the earth can provide. We are gifted to have the beautiful San Geronimo Valley to provide particularly meaningful experiences and knowledge that builds character, values, integrity and responsibility.
Films are $20. each plus $4. mailing charge. Specify DVD or Video.
Contact: kokopauli@earthlink.net or 415-488-1964 or write:
Wilderness Way
P. O. Box 286
Lagunitas, CA 94938

Back to top

2004

OPEN CLASSROOM INDIAN MODELS - 2004
In the Fall of 2004 Molly Whiteley and Laurie Riley's 5th & 6th grade class began making Native American Indian models to illustrate the way the Indians lived here, long ago, on Turtle Island.  WW was contacted to document the project.  27 minutes.

RAISING STEELHEAD EGGS IN THE CLASSROOM (Middle School) - 2004
Lagunitas School District Middle School Middle School students used a digital camcorder to document the project beginning with picking up the eggs at the Warm Springs Fish Hatchery in Geyserville, California and returning them to their birth stream six weeks later. The eggs were placed in a fish incubator built by WW during a workshop sponsored by Trout Unlimited. In the classroom students monitored their growth from egg, to alevin, to fry with a video-flex camera, kept journals, and did math and art as integral parts of the project. 20 minutes.

WATERSHED MODEL OF THE SAN GERONIMO VALLEY - 2004
Montessori Program  (4th and 5th grade)
Twenty-four students studied land forms and used the elements of contour lines, elevation, math, mini-model construction and a field trip to prepare them for building a 3’ x 6’ watershed model of their watershed community -- the San Geronimo Valley. (See Photo Gallery)  Working in groups the students, measured, traced, marked, cut, glued, sculpted, painted and then gathered in joy at the result. Noteworthy is the focus, patience, cooperation, style, and skill building the students exhibit throughout the project. 40 minutes.

FILM PURCHASE
Your purchase of a DVD or video supports Wilderness Way’s ongoing efforts to< bring children into their local environment and to have the children bring their environment into the school. We want each child to experience the physical, mental, and spiritual joy that only a close relationship to the earth can provide. We are gifted to have the beautiful San Geronimo Valley to provide particularly meaningful experiences and knowledge that builds character, values, integrity and responsibility.
Films are $20. each plus $4. mailing charge. Specify DVD or Video.
Contact: kokopauli@earthlink.net or 415-488-1964 or write:
Wilderness Way
P. O. Box 286
Lagunitas, CA 94938

Back to top

2003

WILDERNESS WAY AFTER SCHOOL PROGRAM - 2003
This is the first WW film.  It documents the highly successful WW After School program at the Lagunitas School District.  Children ages 6-10 made wishing poles, plaster casts of animal tracks, fish mobiles, went on field trips to see the Valley coho salmon, and participated in the WW PE component which included a thrilling obstacle course.  30 minutes.

SPECIAL FILM MAKING PROJECT

ELDERS OF THE VALLEY
This is an ongoing WW project by Paul Berensmeier to document Valley elders telling the stories of their life in the Valley.   The three films to date include:

VALLEY ELDER INTERVIEW:  PHIL ARNOT - 2006
Pete Groat of Lagunitas interviewed Valley elder Phil Arnot.  The interview focuses on Phil's 70 year history with the San Geronimo Valley and chronicles his vast experiences as teacher, union leader, W.W.II pilot, antiwar activist, runner, backpacker, mountaineer, photographer, and writer.  70 minutes.

GRANDPA’S SUPERIMPOSITION’S - 2006
This film documents one of dozens of slide shows of Fred C. Berensmeier’s life work using, as he was fond of saying, "The camera as an art tool!" This slide show had been archived by his good friend Phil Arnot and came to the families attention after 25 years.  Superimposition's are a unique technique invented by Fred.  One slide is superimposed over another, creating an amazing “double image.”  Fred was a legend in his time, and left an indelible impression on whoever he met, regardless of age.  Residents who knew him for his love of nature, poetry, stories and being the “real” Santa, will marvel at these images.  23 minutes.

SAVING THE VALLEY - JEAN BERENSMEIER - 2006
Paul Berensmeier wanted to get on record his mother’s childhood epiphany in the Nevada desert, how she discovered the San Geronimo Valley, the story of her walk to empty the garbage that introduced her to environmental politics that changed her life forever, how Spirit Rock got its name, getting the first public open space in the Valley, reminiscences of Roys Redwoods, Larsen Preserve and salmon in Devil's Gulch in the ‘60’s.  Then there’s the> Hendricks & Horne development that became Open Space, the Inkwells, Bates Canyon and more.  Interview by Pete Groat of Lagunitas.  81 minutes.

FILM PURCHASE
Your purchase of a DVD or video supports Wilderness Way’s ongoing efforts to< bring children into their local environment and to have the children bring their environment into the school. We want each child to experience the physical, mental, and spiritual joy that only a close relationship to the earth can provide. We are gifted to have the beautiful San Geronimo Valley to provide particularly meaningful experiences and knowledge that builds character, values, integrity and responsibility.
Films are $20. each plus $4. mailing charge. Specify DVD or Video.
Contact: kokopauli@earthlink.net or 415-488-1964 or write:
Wilderness Way
P. O. Box 286
Lagunitas, CA 94938

"When we try to pick out anything by itself, we find it hitched to everything
else in the universe."
John Muir


Back to Top