How to teach a unit on fire and flood resilience

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Quick summary: A roadmap for how to approach teaching a unit on fire and flood resilience in their own classroom. While primarily focused on fire and flood resilience, it will reference the importance of an all-hazards approach to disaster resilience education.

For more information, check out the course brochure.

Year Level: Primary and Secondary

Topics: Resilience, Natural Disasters

Course Time: 2 hours


In this course, you will learn:

  • Background knowledge on fires and floods so that you can be confident in teaching this material to students
  • Principles of disaster resilience education, how to plan this unit, including what connections you will need to make with your community in preparation for building a resilient community network to have successful social impact beyond the classroom
  • How to build disaster resilience in the community by engaging relevant individuals, leaders, local groups, and agencies.
  • How to design and implement this unit within a classroom, as well as a whole school approach
  • Tips and tricks, including any pitfalls to be aware of and try to avoid, and recommendations on what works well
  • Links to additional helpful resources will be provided

Please note that this PD does not cover trauma or psychological preparedness, which is an important aspect of disaster resilience and recovery. A companion PD, How to approach trauma in the classroom, has been developed by psychologist Michelle Roberts to address this topic, and is free to take.

This PD will reference Michelle’s work and recommend further training in trauma-informed practices where appropriate.


This course will take approximately two hours to complete. Enjoy it in one session or spread it out over a few weeks.


This course is on-demand and for private study. Learn at your own pace and at times that suit you. Get a certificate when you finish. You will have ongoing access.


This course is mapped to the Professional Standards for Teachers. It is accredited for teacher professional development hours in the following states and territories:

Proficient Teacher – all states and territories except NSW
3.3 Select and use relevant teaching strategies to develop knowledge, skills, problem solving and critical and creative thinking.
4.1 Establish and implement inclusive and positive interactions to engage and support all students in classroom activities.


This program has been approved for accreditation within the ACT for 2023.
Please be advised you will be accredited within 14 days of completion.  


Owen Ziebell is a Senior Project Officer at the Australian Institute for Disaster Resilience (AIDR) for Education and Engagement programs. As a former teacher and police officer, Owen has experience in education as well as the emergency services, having lived and worked across rural and metropolitan communities impacted by natural hazards. These experiences have developed Owen’s understanding of the dynamic nature of emergency situations and disasters and the importance of preparation, support networks, and community engagement to develop resilience.

Jarryd Bendall comes from a long line of teachers, which is why he initially avoided this calling. After a myriad of roles in law, medicine, used car sales, and as the mascot for the Western Bulldogs AFL team, Jarryd eventually taught primary school for a number of years, before combining his love for writing and education in an Education Specialist role with Cool. This role sees him as a bridge between knowledgeable industry experts and classroom teachers, bringing excellence into the classroom and challenging the average curriculum with innovative and effective ideas.

Jarryd will be on hand to answer any questions and help you navigate this course.

As a not-for-profit organisation, all revenue from our Professional Development courses is reinvested into providing teachers with the resources to become the designers of exceptional learning.

With Thanks to Our Partners


Minderoo Foundation is independent, forward thinking and seeks effective, scalable solutions. We are proudly Australian, and one of Asia’s largest philanthropies, with AUD $2 billion committed to a range of global initiatives.


The Australian Institute for Disaster Resilience (AIDR) develops, maintains and shares knowledge and learning to support a disaster resilient Australia. Building on extensive knowledge and experience in Australia and internationally, we work with government, communities, NGOs, not-for-profits, research organisations, education partners and the private sector to enhance disaster resilience through innovative thinking, professional development and knowledge sharing.

© 2022 Minderoo Foundation and Cool Australia.

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