Schools Tree Day - Growing Grit

Schools Tree Day - Growing Grit

Lesson 1 of 9 in this unit

  • Secondary
  • Year 7 - 10
  • English
  • Environmental
  • Sustainability
  • Social
  • Outdoor Learning
  • ...

Lesson summary

In this lesson, students will explore the character strength of grit and link time outdoors and in nature as a strategy for coping with setbacks and persevering to achieve their goals in a gritty way. They will read a definition of grit from the Character Lab website, then complete a ‘Think-Pair-Share’ visible thinking routine to better understand what grit looks like in action. Students will deepen their understanding of grit by drafting, practising and conducting an interview with a person that they identify as gritty. Students will then share the stories that they heard in their interview. They will illustrate their understanding about the nature of setbacks and how gritty people persevere through them by physically moving along a timeline to indicate that not all goals are achieved in a linear manner. Students will reflect on how they can apply what they know about grit to their own lives and identify strategies that they can incorporate to be able to pursue their goals with grit.

Learning intentions:

Students will...

  • understand what grit is
  • Students will know some of the features of a formal interview
  • Students will understand strategies to be gritty and how to use them to achieve goals.

Success criteria:

Students can...

  • define and provide examples of grit
  • draft, conduct and report the findings from a formal interview
  • identify personal strategies that enable them to behave in a gritty way.

Lesson guides and printables

Lesson Plan
Student Worksheet
Teacher Content Info

Lesson details

Curriculum mapping

Australian curriculum content descriptions:

Year 7 English:

  • Use interaction skills when discussing and presenting ideas and information, selecting body language, voice qualities and other elements, (for example music and sound) to add interest and meaning (ACELY1804
  • Plan, rehearse and deliver presentations, selecting and sequencing appropriate content and multimodal elements to promote a point of view or enable a new way of seeing (ACELY1720
  • 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

Year 8 English:

  • Use interaction skills for identified purposes, using voice and language conventions to suit different situations, selecting vocabulary, modulating voice and using elements such as music, images and sound for specific effects (ACELY1808)
  • Plan, rehearse and deliver presentations, selecting and sequencing appropriate content, including multimodal elements, to reflect a diversity of viewpoints (ACELY1731
  • 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

Year 9 English:

  • Use interaction skills to present and discuss an idea and to influence and engage an audience by selecting persuasive language, varying voice tone, pitch, and pace, and using elements such as music and sound effects (ACELY1811
  • Plan, rehearse and deliver presentations, selecting and sequencing appropriate content and multimodal elements for aesthetic and playful purposes (ACELY1741
  • Use comprehension strategies to interpret and analyse texts, comparing and evaluating representations of an event, issue, situation or character in different texts (ACELY1744
  • Create imaginative, informative and persuasive texts that present a point of view and advance or illustrate arguments, including texts that integrate visual, print and/or audio features (ACELY1746
  • Review and edit students’ own and others’ texts to improve clarity and control over content, organisation, paragraphing, sentence structure, vocabulary and audio/visual features (ACELY1747

Syllabus outcomes: EN4-3B, EN5-1A, EN5-2A, EN5-3B.

General capabilities: Literacy, Personal and Social Capability.

Cross-curriculum priority: Sustainability

Relevant parts of year 7 English achievement standards: Students listen for and explain different perspectives in texts. They understand how to draw on personal knowledge, textual analysis and other sources to express or challenge a point of view. Students create structured and coherent texts for a range of purposes and audiences. They make presentations and contribute actively to class and group discussions, using language features to engage the audience.

Relevant parts of year 8 English achievement standards: Students interpret texts. They listen for and identify different emphases in texts, using that understanding to elaborate on discussions. Students create texts for different purposes, selecting language to influence audience response. They make presentations and contribute actively to class and group discussions.

Relevant parts of year 9 English achievement standards: Students evaluate and integrate ideas and information from texts to form their own interpretations. Students create texts that respond to issues, interpreting and integrating ideas from other texts. They make presentations and contribute actively to class and group discussions, comparing and evaluating responses to ideas and issues.

Time required: 2 x 60 mins.

Level of teacher scaffolding: High – facilitate and supervise outdoor learning activities, including class discussion.

Resources required

  • Student Worksheets – one copy per student
  • Printed copies of “Grit” from Character Lab (page 1 only), How to Design and Facilitate and Interview Factsheet, Finding Out about Grit – Interview Template
  • Selected outdoor learning space, such as a school oval, garden or lawn area.


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

  • Communication
  • Creativity
  • Social Skills

Additional info

Following this lesson is an ideal way for students to participate in Planet Ark’s Schools Tree Day – the largest nature-care event in Australian schools. You and your students will join thousands of amazing teachers in making a difference, fostering a child’s love of nature and creating positive environmental change. So, get growing! It only takes a minute to register for Schools Tree Day.

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