Resilient Australia - To Create Change You Need To Be Heard - Write A Letter To The Editor

Resilient Australia - To Create Change You Need To Be Heard - Write A Letter To The Editor

Lesson 9 of 9 in this unit

  • Secondary
  • Year 7 - 8
  • English
  • Persuasive writing
  • Environmental
  • Disaster resilience
  • Social
  • Leadership
  • Social Action
  • ...

Lesson summary

In this English lesson, students will explore examples of how a young person has used their voice to enact social change. From this inspiration, students will learn about the components of Letters to the Editor, before choosing their own topic from the content of this unit, to craft a persuasive response. Students can choose to send their letters to the newspaper, existing programs, projects or to their local MP, to have their voices heard.

Learning intentions:

Students will...

  • understand their options in making their voice heard
  • demonstrate their understanding of what changes need to be made in Australia’s disaster response.

Success criteria:

Students can...

  • identify the different elements of a Letter to the Editor
  • write a persuasive letter arguing their point of view
  • use persuasive language and devices to communicate their contention to an audience.

Lesson guides and printables

Lesson Plan
Student Worksheet
Teacher Content Info

Lesson details

Curriculum mapping

Australian curriculum content descriptions: 

Years 7 English:

  • Plan, draft and publish imaginative, informative and persuasive texts, selecting aspects of subject matter and particular language, visual, and audio features to convey information and ideas (ACELY1725).

Years 8 English:

  • Create imaginative, informative and persuasive texts that raise issues, report events and advance opinions, using deliberate language and textual choices, and including digital elements as appropriate (ACELY1736).

Syllabus outcomes: EN4-4B.

General capabilities: Literacy.

Cross-curriculum priority: Sustainability.

Relevant parts of Year 7 achievement standards:
Students understand how the selection of a variety of language features can influence an audience. They understand how to draw on personal knowledge, textual analysis and other sources to express or challenge a point of view. They create texts showing how language features and images from other texts can be combined for effect. Students create structured and coherent texts for a range of purposes and audiences.

Relevant parts of Year 8 achievement standards: 
Students understand how the selection of language features can be used for particular purposes and effects. They explain the effectiveness of language choices they make to influence the audience. Through combining ideas, images and language features from other texts, students show how ideas can be expressed in new ways. Students create texts for different purposes, selecting language to influence audience response.

Level of teacher scaffolding: Medium – teacher will need to facilitate a discussion about the power of young people to enact social change, and guide students through the Letter to the Editor checklist.

Resources required

  • A device capable of presenting a video to the class and projecting a document to the class


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

  • Communication
  • Community engagement
  • Critical thinking
  • Digital literacy
  • Empathy
  • Initiative

Additional info

We encourage you to undertake the free PD Course How to teach a unit on fire and flood resilience for tips on how to best deliver this lesson.
If you’re concerned about the challenging nature of these topics, consider the free PD Course How to approach trauma in the classroom for information on how best to support your students.

This lesson was made in partnership with
Minderoo Foundation (

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