Small Actions. Big Impact. Create a film to inspire recycling action!

You don’t have to be an experienced filmmaker to take part – all you need is an idea, imagination and motivation.

Students get to create a one minute film encouraging your community to recycle their old mobile phones. The theme this year is ‘Small actions. Big Impact’. The Cool Australia lesson plans help students to explore the topic of mobile phone recycling, learn about changing behaviours and develop their film making skills.

Competition Details – Now Closed for 2020

Entry is open to all primary and secondary students in Australia – and yes, this includes homeschoolers and remote learners. The competition has closed for this year, but you can use these lessons in preparation for the next competition in 2021. Now is the perfect time to get planning.

Keep an eye on this page for the 2020 winners and other fantastic entries.

For judging criteria, entry guidelines and terms and conditions, check out the competition website. Take a look at our previous winners and our expert tips for inspiration. Good luck!


Education Resources

We have partnered with MobileMuster to create six lessons for Years 3-8 designed to support teachers and students in producing quality films for the competition. We recommend the following sequence of lessons, depending on the year levels you are working with.



Film-making Toolkit – Years 3 to 8


Interviews On Recycling – Years 3 & 4


Designing For Film – Years 3 to 6

This toolkit provides an overview of the skills and knowledge required to make great films in the MobileMuster Film Competition. Pick and choose elements, or work through all the material depending on the needs and interests of your students.   This lesson will help students gain information for their films by exploring the importance of recycling mobile phones and the environmental impact of their manufacture.   This lesson contains brainstorming and planning processes to support students in developing ideas for the film competition. Students will be guided through creative processes and work with a group to refine and build out their ideas.  

Changing Behaviour – Years 5 & 6


Designing for Sustainability 1
– Years 7 & 8


Designing for Sustainability 2
– Years 7 & 8

Students will explore the reasons why people don’t choose to recycle their phones and will learn about behaviour change theory. They will explore the importance of acknowledging emotion in decision making and develop ideas to encourage greater uptake of mobile phone recycling.   Students will explore the principles of sustainable design and life-cycle assessments. They will understand the importance and value of designing products deliberately to be reused and recycled. Students will also consider consumer and manufacturer responsibility linked to sustainable product design, and conduct a case study analysis.    This lesson introduces students to some of the key barriers to mobile phone recycling as identified by MobileMuster. Through exploring the role of emotion in changing behaviour and applying Design Thinking processes, students will develop a film that will aim to help mobile phone users overcome their resistance to recycling their old phones.  
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Expert Tips

To help students with their competition entries, watch the experts from Vidico share their tips on how to create a great narrative and technical elements for your film.


Creating a Narrative


Technical Elements of a Great Film


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Previous Winners

The theme for the 2019 competition was Use it or recycle it. MobileMuster received over 90 entries from across the country, with just over 1000 students involved.  The winning students and respective schools are list below. Watch their award-winning videos and be inspired to recycle.

2019 Finalists

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MobileMuster is the product stewardship program of the mobile phone industry and is accredited by the federal government. It is voluntarily funded by all of the major handset manufacturers and network carriers to provide a free mobile phone recycling program in Australia to the highest environmental standard. The program is committed to raising awareness and educating the community on why it is important to recycle.