Mental Health

Mental Health

According to the World Health Organization, mental health is ‘a state of well-being in which every individual realises his or her own potential, can cope with the normal stresses of life, can work productively and fruitfully, and is able to make a contribution to her or his community’.

Schools are an ideal setting for supporting the mental health of young people. They play an important role in raising awareness, reducing stigma and supporting students with mental health issues. Besides offering services such as student support and school psychologists, school staff can participate in professional development such as the modules offered online by the Be You team to increase their knowledge surrounding mental health issues.

Students should understand that good mental health is more than not having a mental illness. Someone with ‘good’ mental health feels capable of dealing with the normal, day-to-day situations that we all experience, while someone with a mental health issue or illness finds it difficult to manage their life. Although it’s normal to experience ups and downs, if issues persist and start impacting on a young person’s quality of life, it’s important that they seek professional support. Anxiety and depression are the most common mental health issues that impact on young people.

This mental health resource includes classroom lessons and Wellbeing Fives. Content has been designed to increase students’ knowledge of mental health issues, including depression, anxiety, and eating and other disorders. Available support services, help-seeking strategies and tips for helping a friend are also covered within the lesson plans. These lessons are linked to various curricula, including the Australian National Curriculum: General Capabilities. Teachers can also access recommended factsheets from Be You and articles from ReachOut Schools that are linked to the lesson focus.

If you have a student who requires urgent help for a mental health issue, follow the procedures within your school. If you aren’t sure what these are, check with your principal or relevant wellbeing staff. You can also find out about other services that are available 24/7 here: Urgent help.

Learn More

Classroom resources

Designed to be engaging and relevant to your students.

Accessing professional help

This lesson will support your students in knowing how and where to access professional help to support them through a mental health issue.

9-10

60 minutes

Anxiety

This lesson will examine how an anxiety disorder differs from ‘normal’ anxiety and supports students in managing associated behaviours and feelings.

9-10

60 minutes

Depression

This lesson will examine what depression is, suggest ways for students to support a friend they are worried about, and offer some help-seeking strategies.

9-10

60 minutes

Eating disorders

This lesson examines eating disorders, with students discussing different disorders, the signs and symptoms of each disorder, and the professional help available.

9-10

60 minutes

PTSD and psychotic disorders

This lesson will examine post-traumatic stress disorder and psychotic disorders, with students discussing the nature of each disorder, their signs and symptoms, and the professional help available.

9-10

60 minutes

Wellbeing Fives

Energise, refocus and develop wellbeing in your students in 5 minutes.

Community action plan

Students develop ideas to contribute to a community action plan for promoting help-seeking at their school.

7-10

5 minutes

Coping strategies

Students use a case study to understand the role that coping skills and support services play in managing mental health issues.

7-10

5 minutes

Helping a friend you are concerned about

Students practise having conversations to support friends experiencing mental health difficulties.

7-10

5 minutes

Local services assessment

Students examine mental health services available within their community.

7-10

5 minutes

Mental health issues

This lesson focuses on helping students to understand mental health issues.

7-10

5 minutes

Supporting a friend with depression

Students examine ways they could support a friend with depression.

7-10

5 minutes

Supporting a friend with stress

Students learn how to support a friend who is experiencing stress.

7-10

5 minutes

'You Can Talk' video discussion

Through analysis of the ‘You can talk’ video, students learn how to respond when they notice a change in a friend.

9-10

5 minutes

Resources for parents and carers

Share with parents and carers to support a whole school approach to student wellbeing.

Anxiety and teenagers

Learn about anxiety in teenagers and what you can do to support them.

Depression and teenagers

Learn the facts about depression in teenagers, the signs to look out for, and what parents can do to help.

Getting help for teenagers

Get professional advice early to learn about how to manage your teen's mental health and wellbeing.

Words you need to know Mental Health

A glossary of services, people and terms you might come across about mental health.