Help-seeking strategies

This lesson explores help-seeking strategies, by assisting students in learning to ask for help. Students unpack scenarios, learning about inclusivity, equality and respectful relationships.

Year Level



60 minutes


  • In class activity

SEL Competencies

  • Social awareness
  • Relationship skills
  • Responsible decision-making

Learning Intention

Students learn about the skills and strategies that can be used to promote inclusivity, equality and respectful relationships, and those that can be used to manage change and challenges and to seek help.

Key Outcomes

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

  • describe the ways a sense of belonging can be shaped
  • explore individual support networks and external support services.
activity 01

Speed chat! Individual support networks/Communicating with friends 35 min

Supporting others and having the support of others is one of the key elements in building respectful relationships. Building a network of support can assist us when we are going through tough times and encourage us to seek help when needed. Being part of a support network means it’s important that we practise the skill of recognising when our friends are not okay.

Read out this scenario:

Lee is 14, has a large group of friends and is normally the life of the party. He has recently developed a crush on his best mate, Ben. He is having a hard time working out his feelings and doesn’t feel able to share them with anyone – particularly Ben, as he doesn’t want to lose their friendship. Lee doesn’t feel his large group of mates will understand him either, as he has heard them use derogatory terms such as ‘faggot’ and ‘homo’ when talking about other students. Lee’s friends have noticed he has stopped hanging around them, both at school and on weekends, and is no longer chatting with them online.

  1. Move students to a large free space.
  2. Position students facing each other, in pairs. One person indicates they are Person A; the other, Person B.
    • Person A asks questions 1, 3, 5 and 7.
    • Person B asks questions 2, 4, 6 and 8.
  3. Students are provided with the speed chat questions (see below) and are to ask their first partner question 1. Each pair has one minute to discuss their responses.
  4. Student A moves one space to the left. Student B remains in the same place and their new partner reads out the next question, which Student B answers. This process is repeated until all the questions are answered.


  1. What indicators are there that Lee isn’t okay? Include examples of what he may look/sound like online and in face-to-face contexts.
  2. What barriers may Lee be facing with sharing his feelings?
  3. What qualities and characteristics do people need in order to be part of a network of support?
  4. What are the strengths of using text/online chat to ask if Lee is okay?
  5. What are the weaknesses of using text/online chat to ask if Lee is okay?
  6. What threats arise from using text/online chat as forms of communication to ask if Lee is okay?
  7. Discuss a situation where you have asked a friend if they are okay. How did you ask?
  8. What immediate supports are available for you and a friend at school and online if you or they are not okay?

Whole-class discussion: Who is in your network of support?