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

Year Level



60 minutes


  • In class activity

SEL Competencies

  • Self-awareness
  • Social awareness
  • Self-management
  • Responsible decision-making
  • Relationship skills

Learning Intention

Students understand what depression is, how to recognise it and ways to seek help.

Key Outcomes

By the end of the lesson, students will be able to:

  • identify what depression is, and recognise its signs and symptoms
  • understand how to support a friend to get help for depression
  • recognise valuable help-seeking strategies.
Activity 01

Class activity: Agree-Disagree statements 15 min

To feel more confident when teaching this lesson, we recommend you access the following:

Agree–Disagree: Depression statements

During this activity, students’ opinions related to depression will be explored. Remind students of the importance of listening to and valuing the opinions of others.

  1. Hang the five opinion signs in order (strongly agree, agree, neutral, disagree and strongly disagree) on a wall with space between each sign.
  2. Read aloud to the students the following statements on depression, one by one:
    • Depression is more than feeling sad.
    • Sometimes, talking about depression isn’t enough.
    • Depression can affect anyone, at any time.
    • Getting help can be really hard.
    • There are many options for treating depression.
    • People don’t choose to have depression.
    • After reading each statement, ask students to move to the opinion sign that most closely aligns with their thinking. The number of statements you read out may depend on the time available and the engagement of the students.
    • Invite students to share with the group or a partner why they moved to a particular opinion sign.
  3. At the end of the activity, share with students the article ‘7 facts about depression’.