Blueback - How Healthy is the Ocean?

Blueback - How Healthy is the Ocean?

Lesson 5 of 14 in this unit

  • Primary
  • Year 5
  • Humanities and Social Sciences
  • Geography
  • Environmental
  • Oceans
  • Sustainability
  • Water
  • ...

Lesson summary

Students create a map identifying some of the major issues currently impacting the ocean surrounding Australia.

Learning intentions:

Students will...

  • explore a range of challenges the ocean surrounding Australia is currently facing.

Success criteria:

Students can...

  • identify and describe some of the challenges facing the ocean surrounding Australia
  • brainstorm possible solutions to some of these challenges.

Lesson guides and printables

Lesson Plan
Student Worksheet

Lesson details

Curriculum mapping

Australian Curriculum (v9.0) content descriptions:

  • the influence of people, including First Nations Australians and people in other countries, on the characteristics of a place (AC9HS5K04)
  • the management of Australian environments, including managing severe weather events such as bushfires, floods, droughts or cyclones, and their consequences (AC9HS5K05)

Syllabus outcomes: GE3-2

Cross-curriculum priority: Sustainability

Relevant parts of Year 5 achievement standards:
By the end of Year 5, students can identify and describe the interconnections between people and the human and environmental characteristics of places, and between components of environments. They identify the effects of these interconnections on the characteristics of places and environments. They identify and describe different possible responses to a geographical challenge.

Resources required

  • Access to the film Blueback 
  • Access to (optional)
  • Device capable of presenting video and audio to the class 
  • Digital map of Australia – one per student 
  • Individual devices capable of accessing the internet (optional)
  • Student Worksheet – one per student


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

  • Ethical understanding
  • Initiative
  • Problem-solving

Additional info

Level of teacher scaffolding: Medium - High: The concepts covered in this lesson may be complex, sophisticated and or required specific and technical knowledge. Teachers should read this resource and its associated materials well in advance of delivering the lesson. There will be concepts covered that require further reading or extra preparation. Some of the activities may need careful planning in context to teachers’ classrooms. This lesson includes the option to use Canva: teachers should familiarise themselves with this tool before using it with students. 

Minderoo Foundation is proud to be the education partner for the film adaption of Tim Winton’s best-selling book, Blueback.

Related professional learning

Teach the Big Picture of Sustainability

Quick summary: Open your students’ minds to how different systems – environmental, social and economic – are connected.

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