A Fire Inside - The Importance of Seeking and Offering Help

A Fire Inside - The Importance of Seeking and Offering Help

Lesson 2 of 8 in this unit

  • Secondary
  • Year 9 - 10
  • Health and Physical Education
  • Health
  • Social
  • Mental Health
  • Physical Health
  • ...

Lesson summary

In this Health and Physical Education (HPE) lesson, students will consider the importance of seeking help and articulate their existing support networks. The class will analyse and discuss a case study from the film ‘A Fire Inside’ of a community in need of help. Students will then create campaigns to support communities in need of help and address ways to gain support.

Learning intentions:

Students will...

  • identify existing support networks
  • analyse and evaluate a case study to consider factors that impact wellbeing
  • propose a campaign to support communities in need of help.

Success criteria:

Students can...

  • connect to prior knowledge to articulate who they can call on for support
  • articulate various reasons people need support and help 
  • consider and discuss how they can offer help and why it is essential to be empathetic and offer support
  • track their thoughts and feelings in response to a case study of a community in need
  • carefully select language and images that encourage a community to seek help.

Lesson guides and printables

Lesson Plan
Student Worksheet
Teacher Content Info

Lesson details

Curriculum mapping

Australian curriculum content descriptions:

Years 9 & 10 Health and Physical Education:

  • Evaluate factors that shape identities and critically analyse how individuals impact the identities of others (ACPPS089)
  • Plan, implement and critique strategies to enhance the health, safety and wellbeing of their communities (ACPPS096)
  • Plan and evaluate new and creative interventions that promote their own and others’ connection to community and natural and built environments (ACPPS097)

Syllabus outcomes: PDHPE5.1, PDHPE5.6, PDHPE5.9

General capabilities: Ethical UnderstandingIntercultural UnderstandingLiteracyPersonal and Social Capabilities

Cross-curriculum priority: Sustainability

Relevant parts of Year 9 & 10 HPE achievement standards: 
By the end of Year 10, students critically analyse contextual factors that influence identities, relationships, decisions and behaviours. They analyse the impact attitudes and beliefs about diversity have on community connection and wellbeing. They evaluate the outcomes of emotional responses to different situations. Students propose and evaluate interventions to improve fitness and physical activity levels in their communities.
They apply decision-making and problem-solving skills when taking action to enhance their own and others’ health, safety and wellbeing.

This lesson is part of the wider unit of work: A Fire Inside: Feature Documentary Years 7 to 10

Time required: 70 mins

Level of teacher scaffolding: Medium – facilitate class discussion

Resources required

  • A device capable of presenting a video to the class
  • Student Worksheets – one copy per student
  • Post-it notes, whiteboard and markers
  • Resources for making posters (either digital or paper and pencils)


This lesson is designed to build students’ competencies in the following skills:

  • Communication
  • Community engagement
  • Critical thinking
  • Empathy
  • Ethical understanding
  • Flexibility
  • Social skills
  • Problem solving     

Additional info

Before teaching the lessons, ensure you have watched the feature documentary ‘A Fire Inside’, rated MA15+ and have gained approval from parents and guardians before viewing the documentary. 

To view the film you can rent or purchase an online copy from Google PlayApple TVPrime Video, or Ritz at home.
Students may develop heightened emotions and discomfort during the film whilst learning about the psychological effects and impact the fires had on animals, people, families, communities, and the country. It is recommended that you direct students to a school counsellor if they require additional support and read through the Handling Sensitive Topics and Issues: Handling Sensitive Topics and Issues.

About the feature documentary - A Fire Inside:
When a volunteer firefighter drives his car to almost certain death, he does it during the worst fires in Australian history because he ‘has a job to do’. Three months later, the fires are out, but his fight is just beginning.

Turning a sensitive lens on the unprecedented devastation of Australia’s 2019/2020 ‘Black Summer’ bushfires; from a country-wide emergency to the astonishing stories of help that emerged, A Fire Inside presents an inspirational look at how people respond to crisis and the impact it has on the human spirit.

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