Activity Introduction

blue_whales-ocean_untitled_1-676-1_photoframeQuick Summary: This lesson incorporates clips from Blue The Film as learning inspiration. In this finding out lesson, students will use visible thinking routines to respond to visual stimulus of the the ocean and ocean ecosystems. They will begin to learn about communicating meaning by telling personal stories. They consider ways the ocean is changing as a result of human activities and critically reflect on real or imagined experiences of the ocean. Students also develop their skills in communicating personal experience using reflective language.

blue-white-logo-120pxBlue is a feature documentary film charting the drastic decline in the health of our oceans. With more than half of all marine life lost and the expansion of the industrialization of the seas, the film sets out the challenges we are facing and the opportunities for positive change. Blue changes the way we think about our liquid world and inspires the audience to action. Find out how to screen or download the film here. Along with the film is an ambitious global campaign to create advocacy and behaviour change through the #oceanguardian movement. To become an ocean guardian, see the website.

Learning intentions:

  • Students begin to understand the nature and value of reflection and personal experience and the connection between these in terms of telling stories.
  • Students begin to understand and articulate the role the ocean has played in Australia and for both visitors and citizens alike.

21st century skills:


Australian Curriculum Mapping

Content descriptions:

Year 8 English

  • Investigate how visual and multimodal texts allude to or draw on other texts or images to enhance and layer meaning (ACELA1548)
  • Explore the interconnectedness of Country/Place, People, Identity and Culture in texts including those by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander authors (ACELT1806)
  • Recognise and explain differing viewpoints about the world, cultures, individual people and concerns represented in texts (ACELT1807)

Syllabus outcomes: EN4-6CEN4-8D.

General capabilities: Literacy, Critical and Creative Thinking.

Cross-curriculum priority: Sustainability.

Relevant parts of Year 8 English achievement standards: Students create texts for different purposes, selecting language to influence audience response. They make presentations and contribute actively to class and group discussions, using language patterns for effect. Students demonstrate understanding of grammar, select vocabulary for effect and use accurate spelling and punctuation.

Topic: Blue The Film, Ocean Conservation, Water, Sustainability.

Unit of work: Blue The Film – English – Year 7 & 8.

Time required: 60 mins.

Level of teacher scaffolding: Low – lead students in discussion.

Resources required: Student Worksheet – one per student. Device capable of presenting a website, clip and digital worksheet to the class. The Ocean Stimulus Images.

Keywords: Blue The Film, ocean conservation, marine ecosystems, reflection, language, ocean, experiences.

Cool Australia and Northern Pictures would like to acknowledge the generous contributions of GoodPitch² AustraliaShark Island InstituteDocumentary Australia FoundationThe Caledonia Foundation and Screen Australia in the development of these teaching resources.

Cool Australia’s curriculum team continually reviews and refines our resources to be in line with changes to the Australian Curriculum.

© 2017 Northern Pictures and Cool Australia


Teacher Worksheet

blue_turtle-light_slp_0054-copy-2_photoframeTeacher preparation

Learning intentions: Students begin to understand the nature and value of reflection and personal experience and the connection between these in terms of telling stories. Students begin to understand and articulate the role the ocean has played in Australia and for both visitors and citizens alike.

Success criteria:

  • Students can write a clear and concise reflection about their real or imagined experiences with the ocean using reflective language and some description.
  • Students can explain the role that the ocean has played for people and communities in Australia and explain, where relevant, the way it has influenced themselves.


Teacher content information: From space, our planet appears as a tiny blue dot in the vastness of the universe. No matter where you live on our blue planet – you’re connected to the sea.

But the seas are under threat. The industrialisation that has occurred in the oceans over the last century mirrors the events that triggered mas

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Student Worksheet

Thought starter: What does the ocean mean to me?

Part A: See-Think-Wonder

Your teacher will guide you through the 'See-Think-Wonder' activity below. A 'See-Think-Wonder' routine is a visible thinking strategy that encourages you to make thoughtful observations and interpretations about what you see. It can also help you establish goals for further learning.

Choose an image from the Ocean Stimulus Images that captures your attention or reminds you of your experience/s with the ocean.

What do you SEE? What do you THINK about that? What does it make you WONDER?

Part B: Think-Pair-Share: What Role has the Ocean Played in my Life?

While the ocean plays an important part of the global ecosystem, it also plays a very significant role in Australian culture. For many people in the Australian community, the ocean has been a very important part of their childhood or lifestyle, and this could include from family holidays, to where they live, or a school trip. Howev

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