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 use Peggy McIntosh’s ‘Invisible Knapsack’ to identify the impacts of white privilege. They work collaboratively to analyse how these impacts are explored in a range of clips from the documentary The Final Quarter considering the stories of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and others. Students begin to transfer their skills by independently reading and analysing a written text. They then work collaboratively to consider the context and ideas within the texts they have explored. The final reflection is generative, allowing students to synthesise their existing knowledge and consider further areas for research or exploration.

Note: Talking about white privilege can be extremely uncomfortable for some people because it is an unfamiliar concept to many Australians. White privilege is structural and as such may not be recognised by those who hold it. The teacher notes provide resources to deepen your understanding of white privilege, and responding to discomfort, and it is recommended that students complete The Final Quarter – What is Privilege? – English – Year 10 prior to the other lessons in this unit. 

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 the hidden mechanisms of white privilege.
  • Students understand the experiences of those who do not experience white privilege.
  • Students understand that texts present both the spoken and unspoken values of authors.

21st century skills: 

CommunicatingDigital LiteracyEmpathyEthical UnderstandingSocial SkillsTeam Work

Australian Curriculum Mapping

Content descriptions: 

Year 10 English:

  • Evaluate the social, moral and ethical positions represented in texts (ACELT1812)
  • Identify and analyse implicit or explicit values, beliefs and assumptions in texts and how these are influenced by purposes and likely audiences (ACELY1752)
  • Analyse and evaluate how people, cultures, places, events, objects and concepts are represented in texts, including media texts, through language, structural and/or visual choices (ACELY1749)

Syllabus outcomes: EN5-7D, EN5-8D

General capabilities: Literacy, Intercultural Understanding, Personal and Social Capability, Ethical Understanding

Cross-curriculum priority: Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Histories and Cultures (OI.5, OI.6)

Relevant parts of Year 10 achievement standards: Students develop and justify their own interpretations of texts. They evaluate other interpretations, analysing the evidence used to support them. They listen for ways features within texts can be manipulated to achieve particular effects.

Topic: Learning Through Film, Social Issues, Indigenous Education

This lesson is part of the wider unit of work: The Final Quarter – White Privilege – English – Year 10

Time required: 75 mins.

Level of teacher scaffolding: High – scaffold discussion around a contentious topic.

Resources required:

Keywords: white privilege, controversial topics, race, culture, text analysis, media analysis, author views and values, documentary, film, The Final Quarter, Adam Goodes.

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: Students understand…

  • ... the hidden mechanisms of white privilege.
  • ... the experiences of those who do not experience white privilege.
  • ... that texts present both the spoken and unspoken values of authors.

Success criteria: Students can…

  • … make connections between differing impacts of white privilege.
  • … identify the implicit values within a text.
  • … evaluate the positions held by a text.

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 Goo

- or - to view worksheets

Student Worksheet

Thought starter: “White privilege is your history being taught as the core curriculum and mine being taught as an elective.” ~ Jose del Barrio

Connecting To Key Ideas About White Privilege

1. Adapted from Peggy McIntosh’s ‘Invisible Knapsack’:

When I am told about our national heritage or about ‘civilisation’, I am shown that people of my race made it what it is.
I can swear, or dress in second hand clothes, or not answer letters, without having people attribute these choices to the bad morals, poverty or the illiteracy of my race.
I am never asked to speak for all the people of my racial group.
I can remain oblivious to the language and customs of people from a race other than my own without feeling (in my culture) any penalty for such oblivion.
I can criticise our government and talk about how much I fear its policies and behaviour without being seen as an outsider.
I can be pretty sure that if I ask to talk to the ‘person in charge’, I will be talki
- or - to view worksheets

Leave your Feedback

We appreciate your feedback. Let us know what you like or don't like about this activity:

Sorry. You must be logged in to view this form.