Open Parachute

Don't waste money
on a program that
doesn't get used.

Pre-planned lessons mean less
preparation for your teachers.

Engaging Lessons that students will love

Each lesson is based around documentary videos which showcase real youth sharing their own experiences of overcoming struggle. Peer role-modeling is clinically proven to help students develop resilience, while also creating a sense of safety in the classroom, enabling students to explore their own experiences of struggle.

“It was really well received by our students. It really removed the stigma of talking about mental health and wellness and the students really loved it.”

“It was really well received by our students. It really removed the stigma of talking about mental health and wellness and the students really loved it.”

Amanda Botic - School Counsellor

Give your teachers a break

Let a Clinical Psychologist do the work! Each video contains teaching points from our founder, Clinical Psychologist Dr Hayley Watson. These concise, targeted messages ensure that the core therapeutic aims and key learning points are clear to students and teachers.

“The clips from Dr hayley were very clear and concise.”

“The clips from Dr hayley were very clear and concise.”

Taura Berg - Director of student services

Take learning outside the classroom

Each lesson contains partner exercises that enable students to analyze the learning points and practice mental health skills-building exercises. These conversations change the way students interact in other contexts outside of class, minimising the isolation and vulnerability of students when they are struggling with their mental health.

“Kids are learning to take perspective. They’re showing a lot more empathy for others and a greater understanding for people who struggle.”

“Kids are learning to take perspective. They’re showing a lot more empathy for others and a greater understanding for people who struggle.”

Jenny Williams - Director of Educational Support Services

Teachers become more confident

By running Open Parachute, teachers get a chance to practice fundamental mental health concepts. Alongside their students, teachers learn important skills that not only give them confidence to support the mental health of their students, but also improve their own mental health along the way.

“They’ve got the language, they’ve got the resources and they feel like they have greater confidence to help students navigate issues as they come up.”

“They’ve got the language, they’ve got the resources and they feel like they have greater confidence to help students navigate issues as they come up.”

Carol -Ann Leidloff - Director of Instruction

Student-led exercises

Each program includes time for writing privately about sensitive topics, to assist students in reflecting on the material in the context of their own challenges. Journaling is a powerful tool for positive mental health outcomes, and the program introduces and reinforces this useful habit for students.

“When there are journaling opportunities, there’s really no other time in the school day that students can express themselves in that way, or even be asked these questions about how they’re feeling, or some of the thoughts they’re having or even some of the experiences that are going on in their life.”

“When there are journaling opportunities, there’s really no other time in the school day that students can express themselves in that way, or even be asked these questions about how they’re feeling, or some of the thoughts they’re having or even some of the experiences that are going on in their life.”

Taura Berg - Director of Student Services

"Open Parachute was the tool we were looking for to help us engage with our students about their thoughts and feelings. This peer-based learning approach has improved student engagement in discourse focused on the critical understanding of issues related to mental health."

Simple and practical resources to help teachers address student mental health

Mental health expertise not required

Be confident that your
students are supported

Teachers are taught how to successfully run the Open Parachute program in a series of training videos. Teachers are taught how to use their existing educator skills to effectively run lessons that support the mental health of all their students.

Build your teachers’ confidence

Teachers are provided with instructional videos that provide specific steps for how to best respond to student questions and comments that arise during the program. Teachers are also provided with step-by-step instructions for how to manage student mental health concerns so that they are confident in their ability to respond in a crisis.

Helping students engage
in mental health

For some students, talking about their feelings will come easily, but for others it may be more difficult. In this program, teachers are walked through specific strategies to help their students engage in the content, and are provided with a greater understanding of how to effectively reach all of their students.

Easy preparation

Teachers are provided with printable worksheets prior to each lesson which contain all the information they will need, as well as suggestions and tips for running the lesson. There is also a two-minute audio recording accompanying each lesson, which provides teachers with a brief overview of the key learning outcomes.
"The discussions were fantastic. The students were really open with things they were dealing with - like the kids in the videos. That was ideal because then it normalizes experiences students are afraid to verbalize and they start to realize they aren't so different after all. We were able to support these students and they were able to begin supporting each other. This program offers a very evidence-based, well laid out, easy to prep set of lessons that are specific to the grade level they teach. Students engage well because they can relate to the kids in the videos."

Engaging Lesson Topics that map onto CASEL

This Lesson helps students learn about their feelings, understand where feelings live in their bodies, and share their feelings with classmates. Students are given the chance to practice the resilience skills of noticing the difference between feelings, and their personal physical response to different pleasant and unpleasant emotions.

This Lesson focuses on helping students identify challenges that occur in friendships, specifically actions that are hurtful between peers. Students are taught the connection between thoughts, feelings, and actions, and given the chance to practice skills for staying calm and making positive choices with their friends and peers. 

This Lesson focuses on fighting that turns physical (eg. Between peers, family members). Students explore situations where anger turns into aggression, and how to set boundaries when they are being hurt. They also build skills for relating to their feelings of anger in a healthy way, and understanding the perspectives of others.

This Lesson focuses on helping students identify situations that make them uncomfortable. They are given a chance to reflect on situations that cross boundaries of safety and comfort, including ‘safe’ and ‘unsafe’ secrets, touch, and relationships. They practice skills for setting boundaries in situations where they feel disempowered, and identifying safe adults to protect them. This Lesson covers the core requirements for Erin’s Law regarding safety and protection in situations of potential abuse. 

This Lesson introduces students to the topic of mental health, and focuses on normalising honest communication about personal challenges. Students are given the opportunity to discuss mental health challenges and break down stigma associated with these challenges. They practice setting guidelines and boundaries for having safe discussions with their peers. 

This Lesson focuses on helping students identify experiences that make them feel positive, as well as experiences that make them feel overwhelmed or sad. They are taught skills for connecting and ‘becoming friends’ with their feelings, to self-soothe when they face challenges. They are also taught skills for identifying and changing unhelpful thinking patterns that arise during times of struggle.

This Lesson explores challenges between friends. Students are given the opportunity to reflect on friendship struggles like losing friends or changing friendship groups, and taught skills for overcoming these challenges, such as apologizing and setting boundaries. There is a focus on accountability and making positive choices for ourselves, as well as developing empathy and compassion for others. 

This Lesson focuses on bullying dynamics between peers. Students learn to identify bullying situations, as well as tools for supporting themselves and others who are being hurt in this way. They are given the opportunity to practice sharing their feelings and speaking out about these challenging experiences. 

This Lesson focuses on helping students identify situations of potential abuse .They are given a chance to reflect on situations that cross boundaries of safety and comfort, including ‘safe’ and ‘unsafe’ secrets, touch, relationships, and games. They practice skills for setting boundaries in situations where they feel disempowered, and identifying safe adults to protect them. This Lesson covers the core requirements for Erin’s Law regarding safety and protection in situations of potential abuse. 

This Lesson introduces students to the topic of mental health, and focuses on normalising honest communication about personal challenges. Students are given the opportunity to discuss the universal mental health challenges that can impact all of us in the course of our lives, and are taught skills for seeing the possibility of positive change to overcome any challenging situation.

This Lesson focuses on friendship dynamics, and ways that we can be supportive or unsupportive of our peers. Students are given the opportunity to practice tools for forming positive friendships, coping when friends move away, supporting each other through struggles, and speaking up when people are hurting them. 

This Lesson focuses on the dynamics we often form with our family members and people that are close to us, and how we can sometimes feel upset by things that make other people happy. Students are taught skills for being honest about their feelings, and learning to see things from different perspectives. They are also given a chance to reflect on their friendships from the perspective of the values they create with their families. 

This Lesson addresses challenges that arise in the learning journey. There is an emphasis on normalising the feelings of frustration and worry that come from comparisons with others, and building empathy for those who have different ability levels than we do. Students are taught skills for applying themselves and overcoming obstacles regardless of their ability.

This Lesson focuses on bullying dynamics, and patterns of addiction with technology. Students learn to identify bullying situations and addictive tendencies, as well as tools for supporting themselves and others in these situations. They practice tools for self-soothing and defining themselves by their own standards, and are taught skills for boosting their own self-esteem and being inclusive with peers.

This Lesson focuses on helping students identify situations of potential abuse.They are given a chance to reflect on situations that cross boundaries of safety and comfort, including ‘safe’ and ‘unsafe’ secrets, touch, relationships, and ‘lures’. They practice skills for setting boundaries in situations where they feel disempowered, and identifying safe adults to protect them. This Lesson covers the core requirements for Erin’s Law regarding safety and protection in situations of potential abuse. 

This Lesson introduces students to the topic of mental health, and focuses on normalising honest communication about personal challenges. Students are given the opportunity to discuss the universal mental health challenges that can impact all of us in the course of our lives, and are taught skills for seeing the possibility of positive change to overcome any challenging situation.

This Lesson helps students identify challenges that occur when trying to make new friends. Students learn how to identify the challenging thoughts and feelings that arise when they are meeting new friends. They are also taught how to push themselves outside of their comfort zone to find people they connect with, and how to identify which friends are a positive influence, and which ones are not.

This Lesson helps students identify situations of bullying and prejudicial treatment. Students learn that it is normal to develop low self-esteem as a result of being treated poorly by others, and to want to hide these experiences from others. They also learn that there are people who want to support them, and the positive impacts of asking for help. Finally, they learn tools and strategies for helping themselves and others to overcome bullying dynamics and power imbalances.

This Lesson teaches students about anxiety, and how anxiety can arise as a result of our brain’s response to challenging experiences and difficult emotions. Students learn about different reactions that are common when one is experiencing anxious patterns, and how to overcome these challenges. They are guided through tools for facing their fears to overcome anxiety in any situation.

This Lesson teaches awareness about the many layers of impact that are a result of situations of harm. Students are given the chance to generate a trauma-informed perspective in their interactions with others and their understanding of themselves and their peers. There is a focus on building skills for recognising and overcoming trauma patterns. 

This Lesson focuses on building skills for recognizing and responding to hurtful actions. Students explore unkind actions from friends, as well as actions that cross a line and require outside support. They also investigate boundary violations from the words and actions of others (eg. Slurs, inappropriate touch) and practice tools for standing up for what is right, while supporting themselves and others.

This Lesson introduces students to the topic of mental health, and focuses on normalising honest communication about personal challenges. Students are given the opportunity to discuss the universal mental health challenges that can impact all of us in the course of our lives, and are taught skills for seeing the possibility of positive change to overcome any challenging situation.

This Lesson covers the common challenge of wanting to “fit in” with peer groups in person and online, and how this can negatively impact self-esteem. Students are given the opportunity to identify unhelpful reactions that are common when trying to fit in, and practice the skill of changing patterns of thought and action to boost their self-esteem and independent sense of self.

This Lesson focuses on building empathy for self and others. Students explore the reasons behind aggressive and apathetic reactions, and practice analysing the layers of emotion that are often present beneath the surface – both in themselves and others. They are given the chance to reflect on the positive impacts they can have on others through offering support and compassion, and to practice tools for how they can support their peers.

This Lesson begins with an exploration of ‘privilege’ and an understanding that mental health impacts all of us, regardless of our circumstances or socioeconomic status. Students learn how personal challenges impact thoughts, feelings, and behaviours, and explore the link between stress responses and longer term mental health patterns. They are given the chance to reflect on their own challenges and coping strategies for facing those challenges.

This Lesson focuses on bullying dynamics between peers. Students learn to identify bullying situations, as well as tools for supporting themselves and others who are being hurt in this way. They are given the opportunity to contemplate the impact of unkind actions on others, and the positive outcomes of making choices to define ourselves by our own standards, and using tools to boost our own self-esteem.

This Lesson focuses on the challenges that can arise when making choices and defining who we are as a person. There is a focus on overcoming peer pressure, and applying ourselves in academics, sport, and other pursuits, in order to create a life that we enjoy. Students are given the opportunity to identify and change thinking patterns that hold them back from becoming their best selves. 

This Lesson focuses on understanding the impacts of sexual abuse, and breaking down myths about abuse that lead to stigma. Students are taught skills for creating systems of support, reaching out to trusted adults, expressing feelings, and supporting others who have been harmed. They analyse common reactions to abuse, as well as positive outcomes that can occur after abuse when the proper support systems are in place.
 

This Lesson introduces students to the topic of mental health, and focuses on normalising honest communication about personal challenges. Students are given the opportunity to discuss the universal mental health challenges that can impact all of us in the course of our lives, and are taught skills for seeing the possibility of positive change to overcome any challenging situation.

This Lesson focuses on building tools for navigating challenging peer dynamics. Students reflect on different forms of peer rejection/exclusion, and learn to recognise the negative self-esteem impacts that can result from these experiences. They are given tools for analysing the actions of others to gain insight and build self-esteem, while focussing on the things they can control (their own thoughts and actions) in order to build authentic, supportive connections with peers. 

This Lesson focuses on helping students think critically about the stereotypes that they have been exposed to, and how those stereotypes have impacted their own self-perceptions. They are given the chance to analyse body image stereotypes, and practice skills for creating positive self-image rather than trying to ‘fit in’ with the images they are exposed to in the culture around them.

This Lesson gives students an in-depth look at the intersection between trauma, prejudice, and mental health. They are taught skills for supporting themselves and others, and are given the chance to think critically about prejudice and privilege while reflecting on their own experiences and the experiences of others. 

This Lesson focuses on challenges of comparison and gender norms/stereotypes that arise in school, with peers, and when we engage in hobbies (eg. Sports). Students are taught skills for changing their mindset, and taking independent actions based on their own personal values. Issues of consent are raised, and the importance of being conscious of the impact that our actions have on others. 

 

This Lesson focuses on the challenges of starting a new school, specifically the transition into high school. They are given the chance to process their thoughts and feelings about this change, and learn skills for supporting themselves through this experience. There is a focus on connecting with others and finding joyful experiences.

This Lesson introduces students to the topic of mental health, and focuses on normalising honest communication about personal challenges. Students are given the opportunity to discuss the universal mental health challenges that can impact all of us in the course of our lives, and are taught skills for seeing the possibility of positive change to overcome any challenging situation.

This Lesson focuses on emotional awareness and expression. Students practice tools for thinking critically about cultural and peer group messaging that lead to challenging feelings. They are given the opportunity to reflect on and express their true feelings as a tool for supporting themselves and connecting authentically with others.

This Lesson teaches students about boundaries and boundary violations. They practice critically analysing the mental health impacts of sexual, emotional, and physical boundary violations, and discuss strategies for supporting themselves and others who have faced boundary violations. 

This Lesson focuses on mental health challenges such as anxiety and depression, and their link to trauma and prejudice. Students are given the chance to think critically about their own actions and the actions of others in order to build self-awareness and empathy. They are also introduced to skills for supporting their own mental health and the mental health of others.  

This Lesson focuses on the challenges of peer pressure and cultural norms that cause harm to others. Students are taught skills for exploring the pressures they are exposed to, defining themselves by their own values, and speaking up for what they believe in. They are given the opportunity to identify a cultural belief system that they do not agree with, and make a plan for creating positive change in the world. 

This Lesson focuses on challenges related to eating and body image, such as eating disorders. Students are taught to understand the deeper layers of these challenges, and why these patterns manifest. They are given the chance to practice skills for supporting themselves and others to create a healthy, positive self-image. 

This Lesson focuses on acceptance of everyone, regardless of their gender or sexual orientation. Students are given the chance to explore stigma and bias when it comes to these topics, and practice skills for broadening their perspective so they are able to respect and communicate with people who are different than they are. There is a focus on seeing the individual rather than the category, and treating all others the way you yourself would like to be treated. 

 

This Lesson introduces students to the topic of mental health, and focuses on normalising honest communication about personal challenges. Students are given the opportunity to discuss the universal mental health challenges that can impact all of us in the course of our lives, and are taught skills for seeing the possibility of positive change to overcome any challenging situation.

This Lesson focuses on ways to provide support for peers who are struggling with personal challenges. Students are given the chance to reflect on common responses to peers who are struggling, and are taught specific steps to take in order to effectively provide support. They are also encouraged to think critically about the ways that they can create more supportive connections in their peers group and school.

This Lesson focuses on prejudice and mistreatment, and building skills for setting and upholding boundaries for self and others. Students critically analyse different forms of prejudice and mistreatment, and build empathy and understanding for people who have faced these experiences. They are encouraged to reflect on their own experiences of prejudice and privilege, and consider ways that they can create positive cultural change. 

This Lesson focuses on developing an understanding of the impacts of trauma on mental health, specifically examining patterns of anxiety and depression. Students learn to recognise stress responses and build self-awareness of their own struggles. They learn that mental health challenges can be overcome and are taught skills for supporting themselves if they are facing personal struggles. 

This Lesson focuses on inclusivity when it comes to neuro-divergence, differing ability-levels, and varying states of health. Students are given the opportunity to explore bias and stigma regarding these issues, and practice the skills of respecting and connecting with others who may be different than themselves. They are also taught skills for self-advocacy and the advocacy of others, to create respectful, inclusive communities with their peers. 

This Lesson focuses on patterns of addiction and how this can lead to a disconnection from values, including disrespect for self and others (eg. Issues of boundary violations and consent). Students analyze causes of addiction, such as trauma and loneliness, and learn skills for making positive choices for themselves and their peers.

This Lesson focuses on issues of family violence. Students explore the impacts of family violence, and the reasons why this issue often remains hidden from view in our culture. There is a focus on personal empowerment, and students are given the opportunity to create actions that lead to positive cultural change on issues of violence in vulnerable populations. 

This Lesson introduces students to the topic of mental health, and focuses on normalising honest communication about personal challenges. Students are given the opportunity to discuss the universal mental health challenges that can impact all of us in the course of our lives, and are taught skills for seeing the possibility of positive change to overcome any challenging situation.

This Lesson focuses on the challenges of peer pressure, especially as they relate to cultural inequalities, trauma, and racism. Students are given the chance to explore these challenges, and reflect on the impact that these experiences have on our mindset and the circumstances we are exposed to. They are taught skills for forming independent thought and taking actions to empower themselves regardless of their situation, as well as developing empathy for others. 

This Lesson focuses on friendship and relationship patterns that play out between peers, especially when there is struggle involved. Students are given the opportunity to reflect on the meaning behind the actions of others, and build skills for communicating in an honest way that leads to positive change for everyone. There is a focus on personal self-reflection as well as empathy for others. 

This Lesson focuses on understanding mental health challenges like anxiety, depression, and negative self-image. Students learn tools for understanding stress responses, noticing the difference between helpful and unhelpful thinking patterns, and overcoming patterns of avoidance. They are given an opportunity to reflect on the activities that promote their own positive mental health.

This Lesson focuses on prejudice and historical trauma. Students learn about the devastating impacts of prejudice, and how these impacts influence the experience of future generations. They are guided to develop empathy for others and are shown a pathway for creating positive change as a result of overcoming trauma. 

This Lesson focuses on situations of sexual consent violations between peers, and understanding personal responses to these expriences from a trauma-informed perspective. There is an emphasis on building empathy and understanding, and learning skills for supporting themselves and others through these experiences. Students are given the chance to explore bias and stigma in issues of sexual trauma, and increase the levels of respect in their interactions with peers. 

This Lesson focuses on the impacts of loss and grief on our thoughts, feelings, and actions. Students are given the chance to explore similarities and differences in responses to grief, and develop a deeper awareness of why these experiences can be so challenging. They are taught skills for supporting themselves and others through loss, and creating space for grieving as well as growth.

This Lesson introduces students to the topic of mental health, and focuses on normalising honest communication about personal challenges. Students are given the opportunity to discuss the universal mental health challenges that can impact all of us in the course of our lives, and are taught skills for seeing the possibility of positive change to overcome any challenging situation.

This Lesson focuses on preparing students for facing change and uncertainty. They are taught skills for reflecting on the common ways that people respond to change, and practice tools for overcoming patterns of avoidance. Students are guided to notice their own fears and doubts about their future, and to create plans for supporting themselves in overcoming future hurdles.

This Lesson focuses on patterns of addiction and how this can lead to a disconnection from values, including disrespect for self and others. Students analyze causes of addiction, such as trauma, grief and loneliness, and learn skills for making positive choices for themselves and their peers.

This Lesson focuses on cultural inequalities and racism, and the impact that these have on many peoples’ daily lives. Students are given the chance to explore their own prejudice and bias, and are taught skills for accepting and connecting with others who are different than they are. There is an emphasis on building empathy and boosting personal empowerment to create positive cultural change. 

This Lesson explores healthy and unhealthy sexual relationship dynamics, including violations of consent. There is a focus on the lasting and damaging impacts of sexual encounters that are non-consensual, and building tools and skills for setting boundaries and speaking out about harm. Students are given the chance to explore their own definitions of healthy and unhealthy sexual interactions, and learn strategies for respecting themselves and others. 

This Lesson focuses on situations of sexual abuse, and understanding personal responses to these expriences from a trauma-informed perspective. There is an emphasis on building empathy and understanding, and learning skills for supporting themselves and others through serious trauma. Students are given the chance to explore bias and stigma in issues of sexual abuse, and increase the levels of respect in their interactions with peers. 

This Lesson focuses on understanding serious mental health challenges such as bipolar, self-harm, and suicidal ideation. There is a focus on building empathy for those who are in the midst of deep struggle, and an understanding that mental health falls on a spectrum. Students are given the chance to identify their own struggles and contemplate them in the context of the broad scope of mental health experiences, to better understand themselves and connect more deeply with others. 

Be a leader in mental
health education

With separate programs for K-12, Open Parachute can run in your school district for years to come.
and get access
to a free trial!
Teacher Stress Management Toolkit

Teacher Stress Management Toolkit™ for School Leaders. Improve the
well-being of your staff so they can better support your students!