Health and PE Resources for Secondary Schools

Health and physical education (PE) aims to give every young Australians the tools to cope with life’s challenges. It wants to enable them to flourish as healthy, safe and active 21st-century citizens. 

Our resources help secondary health and PE teachers achieve these goals.  

For example, Understanding Feelings is a health teaching resource that includes activities to teach resilience. Similarly, SOLO Taxonomy in Physical Education is an invaluable guide for promoting movement.  

Explore our health and PE curriculum-aligned resources to find ideas for supporting learning and wellbeing.  


How to teach health literacy? 

Developing health literacy is one of the Key Ideas of health and physical education (PE) in the Australian Curriculum. To teach healthy literacy, secondary school teachers should take a strength-based approach, as outlined in the curriculum. 

A strength-based approach involves students developing the skills and knowledge to make safe and healthy decisions. Moreover, it nurtures students' individual strengths, where wellbeing and physical activity participation are promoted for themselves and others. 

Healthy literacy is the ability to gain access to, understand and use health information and services. Consequently, teaching health literacy involves teaching media literacy as students navigate different resources.  

Students should learn to ask questions, like, who created the information? Why was it created? How do the author’s own experiences and biases influence the information? 

What secondary school health and PE resources are available? 

Some of our secondary school health and PE resources available are: 

Understanding Feelings by Dee Doherty 

This resource is designed to build resilience and self-esteem in secondary school students. It develops strategies for them to cope and thrive in our increasingly complex society. 

The activities get students to consider their responses to issues commonly faced by adolescent Australians, such as gender identity and depression.  

Teaching Media Literacy through Body Image by Dale Sutherland 

Part of a series of media literacy resources, this book focuses solely on body image. It examines the relationship between the media, body image and personal wellbeing by looking at the history of the idea of beauty, the diet industry and music videos.   

This secondary school resource links together health, English and the social sciences. Other topics covered that may interest you are stereotypes and relationships.   

Changes in Adolescents by Dee Doherty 

These health books for schools help students to understand the physical and emotional changes they are going through. They provide realistic, thought-provoking and engaging activities like interviews, surveys, role plays and pamphlet design. 

How to help students with anxiety in the classroom? 

To help students with anxiety, they need to feel safe in their classrooms. In her blog, Teenage Anxiety and Learning, author Dee Doherty suggests teachers: 

  • educate students on developmental changes and related mental health issues 
  • establish classroom routines to give familiarity 
  • provide positive and constructive feedback to students 
  • are on alert for any changes in student behaviour and wellbeing 
  • form supportive relationships with students and regularly check in with them 
  • set clear expectations for student behaviour 
  • contact the SENCO, dean and/or form teacher to put a plan in place for the student. 

Anxiety in students can negatively impact learning. Lifestyle changes, such as being involved in sports, eating a healthy diet and reducing social media use, can also help with mild to moderate anxiety.