The Global Search for Education: Space Bears the Movie Is about Friendship and How Working Together Can Overcome Challenges
This month audiences can screen Space Bears the Movie, curated for the Planet Classroom Network by KIDS FIRST! Film Festival.
Directed by Mike Schleif, Space Bears the Movie is a terrific, short 2D animated film with a wonderful message about friendship. Evil King Glopp wants to take over the galaxy. Space Bear Sam teams up with Zoe, Becca and other friends to figure out how to stop him.
The Global Search for Education is pleased to welcome Mike Schleif.
Creating an engaging but impactful children’s allegory is historically difficult. What were some of the techniques you used to make this story accessible to younger audiences?
My oldest daughter helped write the story. She is also the voice of Becca. She contributed to what appealed to her and what she thought would be fun to include in the story from her perspective. She would often read a scene and tell me that it should unfold in a different way, a way that would be more appealing to her age group.
The Friendship Spacegem is another form of a concept we see often in children’s tales around the world. What do you think makes the idea of friendship so powerful to children, and how is it helpful in instilling important learning?
The core of the story is about how friendship and working together can overcome challenges. I think it’s important to teach children about friendship and being kind to others to help make a positive impact in other people’s lives and in the community.
There are multiple nods to consumerism in the story, such as purchasing merchandise and premium spacesuit packages, both of which “will not stop King Glopp alone.”
The story of Super Action Space Bear Sam portrays him as a powerful hero, but even with his huge fanbase, high end product line, and souped up gadgets, it’s the bond that he makes with Becca and Zoe that helps him achieve his goals.
Why do you think consumer skepticism is an important theme to introduce to kids going forward?
While it can be viewed to parallel real or historic events, the movie was really simply about good versus evil and how working together can overcome seemingly impossible odds.
What are you working on now?
Right now, I am working on an educational series with my youngest daughter. It’s called Space Bear Friends and it takes place in a school setting. That and other Space Bear projects can be found on my website spacecubstudio.com.
Thank you Mike!
C M Rubin and Mike Schleif
Don’t Miss Space Bears the Movie, now screening on the Planet Classroom Network. This film is curated for the Planet Classroom Network by Kids First! Film Festival.