Activity Introduction

Quick summary: Retired AFL star Adam Goodes is known to many for his resilient journey in the face of detrimental treatment by AFL spectators and the media beginning in 2013.

In this lesson students will experiment with planning their own archival documentary about something they feel is an important message to give to an audience. Students will research some of the available footage about this issue and pitch their idea for an archival documentary using a discussion protocol.

Using only archival footage aired at the time, The Final Quarter holds a mirror to Australia and is an opportunity to reconsider what happened on and off the football field. Learn more about the film here.

We highly recommend that students view the film in its entirety before participating in subsequent lessons. Our Watching the Film lessons are designed to support you in facilitating this process. Given the content, it is also important for teachers to communicate with parents and guardians of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students before playing the film and/or engaging with the teaching and learning resources. 

Note: This film may not be suitable for viewing by all young people. Teachers are advised to use their discretion when deciding whether to show this film. If teaching in a context with a high proportion of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children, it is imperative that guidance is sought from the Principal and Aboriginal Education Officer (or equivalent) prior to screening the film.

Learning intentions:

  • Students understand how important societal issues can be addressed through documentary filmmaking.
  • Students understand how to construct a project plan for a documentary film.
  • Students understand the processes and procedures of working with archival footage and related copyright considerations.

21st century skills: 

CommunicatingCreative ThinkingCritical ThinkingDigital LiteracyGlobal CitizenshipSocial SkillsTeam Work            

Australian Curriculum Mapping

Content descriptions: 

Years 9 & 10 Media Arts:

  • Experiment with ideas and stories that manipulate media conventions and genres to construct new and alternative points of view through images, sounds and text (ACAMAM073)

  • Develop and refine media production skills to integrate and shape the technical and symbolic elements in images, sounds and text for a specific purpose, meaning and style (ACAMAM075)

  • Produce and distribute media artworks for a range of community and institutional contexts and consider social, ethical and regulatory issues (ACAMAM077)

Syllabus outcomes: PDM5.1, PDM5.2, PDM5.4

General capabilities: Critical and Creative Thinking, Literacy, Personal and Social Capability

Relevant parts of Years 9 & 10 achievement standards: Students produce representations that communicate alternative points of view in media artworks for different community and institutional contexts. They manipulate genre and media conventions and integrate and shape the technical and symbolic elements for specific purposes, meaning and style. They collaboratively apply design, production and distribution processes.

Topic: Learning Through Film, Social Issues, Creative Thinking

This lesson is part of the wider unit of work: The Final Quarter – Assembling Archival Footage – Media Arts – Years 9 & 10

Time required: 100 mins.

Level of teacher scaffolding: Medium – teachers will encourage individual work on an archival documentary plan and then facilitate a large group activity.

Resources required:

Keywords: film, documentary, media, The Final Quarter, archival, footage, conventions, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander, AFL, footy, football, editing, copyright, message, plan, planning, homework, research. 

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


Teacher Worksheet

Teacher Preparation

Learning intentions: Student understand...

  • … how important societal issues can be addressed through documentary filmmaking
  • … how to construct a project plan for a documentary film.
  • … the processes and procedures of working with archival footage and related copyright considerations.

Success criteria: Student can…

  • … devise a plan for an archival documentary.
  • … pitch their ideas for an archival documentary.

Teacher content information:

This lesson will be centred around the acclaimed 2019 documentary, The Final Quarter. This film explores the detrimental treatment of AFL star Adam Goodes and the media and community responses. An Aboriginal player, and number 37 for the Sydney Swans, Adam Goodes was singled out for verbal abuse, booing and jeering by spectators from a range of clubs during the last three years of his career in 2013 - 2015, until he retired from the game. 

Because he was one of the most acclaimed players in the AFL, Adam Goodes a

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Student Worksheet

Thought starter: “Darling... makes the point that we can always learn from history – whether that history is found in an ancient scroll inside a museum, or via television footage from the old, dark, distant days of 2015.” ~ Luke Buckmaster, The Guardian

Reflecting on the film

1. Reflect on your viewing of The Final Quarter and complete these sentences:

The thing I found most interesting/disturbing about The Final Quarter is:

The Final Quarter is an important archival documentary that everyone should see because:

2. Watch this video:

TFQ_Planning The Final Quarter (

The Focusing Four Protocol

3. In groups of four, each person ‘pitches’ their idea to the rest of the group. Using The Focusing Four Protocol, one idea will be selected to develop as a group.

  • Sharing - Person A pitches their idea.
  • Clarifying - Other group members ask clarifying questions about Person A’s work.
  • Repeat the Sharing and Clarifying steps for Persons B, C
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