According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, 21.4 per cent of eighth graders who participated in a survey had admitted to using an illicit drug at some point in their lives. Parents and teachers are teaching kids about the dangers of drug abuse at an early age, because of how available drugs and alcohol have become -- even to young populations. Game play is an effective way to get children to pay attention and stay engaged in the educational lesson about drug prevention.
Many children enjoy solving crossword puzzles because it gives them a challenge. After your anti-drug lesson, find out how much of the information kids retained by providing them with a crossword puzzle game. The crossword puzzle should be related to drugs, and provide clues such as "Cocaine can cause cardiac __ " and "When people can't stop using a drug, no matter how hard they want to, they are_ _." Children must fill the correct answer into the blank on the puzzle.
Why It's Bad
This game involves kids telling the teacher or parent why a particular drug is bad. After giving an information lesson on a variety of drugs and the effects they have on the body, call out a drug and ask a child to tell you why it's bad. It could be that you call out "glue" and the child tells you that it is bad because it causes brain damage. If a particular substance has more than one negative side effect, continue asking kids for another reason why it is bad. This game helps kids learn about the consequences of using drugs.
Drug Bingo is played on a bingo card that contains images of drugs or of people using drugs. The players receive a game card and tokens. As the game host calls out a drug, such as "marijuana," kids check their game boards to see if they have the marijuana image. If they do, they place a token down in the square. The first player to get a row of squares filled in -- horizontally, diagonally or vertically -- wins the game. This game can also be played like tic-tac-toe.
The Influence Game
If you want to give kids a small dose of what it feels like to be under the influence, play the influence game. In this game, the child is spun around and around in a circle 10 times. Then, another child tosses a soft squishy ball at him. The goal is for the player who was spun around to catch the ball as it comes at him. That player will feel dizzy and disoriented, so he will most likely not be able to catch the ball. This shows kids how it feels to be high or drunk. Another idea is to get the children dizzy and have them walk in a straight line over tape that is on the carpet.