Playlist teacher guide - Inclusion & exclusion

Playlist information

Playlist summary

This playlist explores roles and behaviours within groups that are inclusive and exclusive, how exclusion makes others feel and how gender stereotypes contribute to exclusion.

Playlist purpose

The content of the playlist supports students to:

  • use the Feel, Think, Act, Reflect model
  • identify characteristics of inclusive groups
  • become ‘includers’
  • recognise behaviours that contribute to positive relationships
  • recognise that gender stereotypes contribute to exclusion.

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Learning objectives

  • Identify different types of groups and characteristics that make them inclusive.
  • Identify behaviours in groups that are inclusive and exclusive and explore how these behaviours make people feel.
  • Develop skills and behaviours to be more inclusive of others and ensure group members feel they belong.
  • Recognise that gender stereotypes can influence our identity and impact the choices and decisions we make.

Key messages

  • Inclusive and cooperative behaviours demonstrate respect, enhance group relationships and strengthen a sense of belonging.
  • It is important to feel respected and valued in groups you belong to.
  • Gender stereotypes contribute to exclusion and should be challenged.

Year level(s) appropriate for

Year 3, Year 4

Australian curriculum links

Identify and practise strategies to promote health, safety and wellbeing.

Describe how respect, empathy and valuing diversity can positively influence relationships.

Media items

Dax and Nova Play Soccer

Type: Slides.

Duration: 10 minutes.

Source: The Good Society.

Summary: Dax is having the best lunchtime soccer match ever! That is, until an angry Nova stops play with a problem.

Suggested activities:

WALA (we are learning about):  how gender stereotypes contribute to exclusion.

Possible inquiry question: Why is important to challenge gender stereotypes?

Read through the story Dax and Nova Play Soccer considering the following discussion points.

  • Screen 7: How do you think Nova and Dax are feeling? What tells us that? Why are they both feeling so different if they are on the same team?
  • Screen 10: Why do you think the girls on the team never received the ball? Is this fair? Why/Why not? Gender stereotypes can lead to exclusion and discrimination. Assumptions about a person’s ability should not be based on their gender.
  • Screen 13: In this scene we see Nova in the Act step of the Feel, Think, Act, Reflect model. Is this a respectful way to act? Why/Why not?
  • End of story: students think about the questions asked. In pairs students can discuss what they think. Share ideas with the class.

In pairs or small groups, students work through the Feel, Think, Act, Reflect model to identify what Nova was feeling, what she wanted and what Dax was feeling, thinking and wanting. They then brainstorm ideas of what Nova could do that would be more respectful than kicking the ball away. Alternatively, students could work through the Feel, Think, Act, Reflect model from Dax’s point of view and brainstorm more respectful ways that Dax could have acted.

Each group chooses the best possible option. Depending on time constraints groups could share their ideas, write a different ending to the story or act out their new choice for Nova and the consequences of that choice.

Where do you stand?

Students are given the options of agree, disagree, strongly agree, strongly disagree and unsure to respond to a number of statements based on Dax and Nova Play Soccer. Students are asked to stand near the option that best represents their beliefs. Students are then called on to explain their choice. Statements could include:

  • Nova shouldn’t get the ball because girls can’t play sport as well as boys.
  • If Nova shows she can play soccer and score she should be included.
  • Dax should kick the ball to the girls more than he kicks it to the boys.
  • The girls should be included no matter how they perform in the game.
  • Girls should play soccer with the girls and boys should play soccer with the boys.
  • Nova is an excellent soccer player and when she gets the ball she should not pass to the boys.
  • All boys are better at sport than girls.
  • Including all players helps the team to become better.

Bunny New Girl

Type: Video.

Duration: 6 minutes.

Source: Natalie van den Dungen. ()

Summary: Heads up: This resource discusses bullying and exclusion which may be distressing for some people. Starting a new school isn’t easy when you’re shy and you feel different from everyone else. Bullying behaviour makes things worse! This film looks at inclusion, exclusion and friendship.

Teacher notes:

One of the ways that different groups can be powerful is through inclusion and, in a more negative way, exclusion. Social identity theory suggests that we enhance the status of the groups we belong to, creating in-groups and out-groups which can lead to discrimination and exclusion.

However, research indicates that students feel safer when they are exposed to diverse relationships and diversity within groups enhances creativity or group problem-solving.  Diversity in groups can promote creativity, motivation, deeper learning, critical thinking, and problem-solving skills. Although, the group must have something in common, whether that be the same goal, purpose or interests.

Encouraging inclusive behaviours and identifying the benefits of diversity can reduce the culture of in-groups and out-groups and therefore reduce exclusion and bullying.

Inclusive behaviours

An inclusive group uses behaviours that are respectful to individuals and groups that might be different to themselves. Inclusive behaviours of members of groups include:

  • listening and trying to understand different points of view
  • making an effort to offer to help others
  • encouraging group members to welcome and help new group members settle in
  • recognising that the way someone looks, their personality, quirks, beliefs and interests bring something special to the world and that difference makes people interesting and unique
  • appreciating that everyone has something to offer
  • valuing kindness, respect and empathy
  • reaching out to others
  • cooperating rather than competing
  • remembering that the differences and strengths of everyone can increase creativity and problem solving
  • supporting people that are being excluded or standing up to someone who is excluding others.

Benefits of Inclusion

  • Meaningful friendships    
  • Increased appreciation and acceptance of individual differences    
  • Increased understanding and acceptance of diversity    
  • Respect for all people    
  • Prepares all students for adult life in an inclusive society    
  • Opportunities to master activities by practicing and teaching others.
  • Greater academic outcomes.    


Suggested activities:

WALA (we are learning about): behaviours that are inclusive and exclusive and how gender stereotypes contribute to exclusion.

Possible inquiry question: Why is inclusion important in groups I belong to?

Discuss what happened in Bunny New Girl and ask the following questions:

  • How do you think the new girl felt when the boy behind her broke her mask and it came off?
  • Why do you think the girl beside the new girl drew on her face?
  • How do you think the new girl felt when everyone started drawing on their faces?
  • What can you do to include others and stand up to teasing or bullying?
  • Why is it important to have an inclusive school?

Task: students work in small groups to create a project that will increase the inclusiveness of the classroom/school. Brainstorm ways students could act as ‘includers’ around the school. Ideas may include - creating a plan for a lunchtime club; proposing a plan to organise school resources fairly; developing a plan to help younger children make new friends; designing a roster for use of the playground; create monitor groups for things such as ‘Make a Friend’ and help others who need a friend; design and produce ‘Be an includer’ posters and products.


Additional activities:

Students could watch The Basketball Bully or Include Others then create their own scenarios showing either how to stand up to bullying and exclusion or how to include others.

Using Feel, Think, Act, Reflect - Years 3-4

Type: Slides.

Duration: 5 minutes.

Source: The Good Society.

Summary: Revisit the Feel, Think, Act, Reflect model, and think of some ways it could be used to work through a problem you’ve noticed at school. What would you do?

Suggested activities:

WALA (we are learning about): the Feel, Think, Act, Reflect Model.

Possible inquiry question: how can I show empathy and respect when solving problems with others?

Students work through the Feel, Think, Act, Reflect model based on a selection of scenarios. Scenarios could include any specific situations causing conflict within the classroom, playground or school or the following examples:

  • Your best friend keeps making all the rules when you are playing games. One day this friend keeps changing the rules, so they don’t have to be ‘in’.
  • Someone from another table group keeps taking items from your group’s tray. Every time you go to use a pencil/ruler/eraser etc the other table has what you want.
  • Your younger neighbour/cousin/brother/sister/buddy is being left out of a group. The group is saying they can’t play, but for no reason. You want to help your neighbour/cousin/brother/sister/buddy.

Scenarios can be presented in various ways including role plays, puppet shows, pen and paper, PowerPoint presentation, mime etc.

Slide 1: Visual of model

Slide 2: Feel

What am I feeling?

Slide 3: Think

What do I want?

How do others feel and why?

What do others want?

What can I do?

Slide 4: Act

Make a choice and act on it.

Slide 5: Reflect

How is everyone feeling and what are they thinking after my actions?

Slide 6: Using the Feel, Think, Act, Reflect model

You will now use the Feel, Think, Act, Reflect model to work through a problem you might have at school. If you have a real problem with a friendship group that you’d like to work through write out or draw the problem first and then use the Feel, Think, Act, Reflect model to guide you.

Slide 7: Possible scenarios

Activities and extras

For further information, lesson plans and resources to support students around the topics of bullying and wellbeing, see the following resources: