Tragedy and Hope: Decisions and Consequences Lesson

Grade Levels 9 - 12 - Two class periods

 

Program Segments

 

Objectives

Students will be able to:

  • Understand most outcomes of prescription painkiller addiction as treatment, jail, or death
  • Recognize what decisions they could make to avoid prescription drug abuse consequences

 

Instructional Resources

 

Vocabulary

Consequences, decisions

 

Procedures

  1. The facilitator introduces the topic of prescription painkiller addiction. In some cases the exposure to the drugs is by the choice of an individual.
  2. Students will watch the Accessibility, Signs and Symptoms, and Treatment and Relapse segments from Tragedy and Hope Stories of Painkiller Addiction.
  3. The facilitator will distribute the Treatment, Jail, or Death Worksheet. The class will read the quote at the top of the worksheet and complete the section on what they think the quote means.
  4. The facilitator will start a discussion based on the quote and talk about the students’ comments and questions. Sometimes, inevitably, if you have an injury or condition, a doctor may prescribe medication for you. It should be made clear to the students that they need to be aware of the danger signs from taking the medication and also the ability to deny the medication if feasible.
  5. The facilitator will distribute the Decisions and Consequences Flow Chart. Briefly discuss that many people feel that prescription drugs are safe to take, but that is a misconception. If people begin with prescription drug use there may be a high chance of addiction with a limited number of outcomes:
    1. Treatment
    2. Jail
    3. Death
  6. Show the other segments of the program, Ryan’s Story and Avi & Julie’s Story.
  7. Have the students complete the rest of the Treatment, Jail, or Death Worksheet.
  8. Conclude the class with a discussion of their answers and any other concerns that they may have regarding prescription drugs.

 

Assessment Task

Students should actively participate in all class discussions and turn in a completed Treatment, Jail, or Death Worksheet.

 

Extension Activity

Have the students write a letter to a younger sibling or relative. They should describe the consequences of prescription drug abuse and addiction. Students should explain that there are decisions one can make and things one can do that will help them avoid inevitable consequences.

 

National Health Standards

  • Standard 1 – Students will comprehend concepts related to health promotion and disease prevention to enhance health.
  • Standard 2 – Students will analyze the influence of family, peers, culture, media, technology, and other factors on health behaviors.
  • Standard 4 – Students will demonstrate the ability to use interpersonal communication skills to enhance health and avoid or reduce health risks.
  • Standard 5 - Students will demonstrate the ability to use decision making skills to enhance health.
  • Standard 6 - Students will demonstrate the ability to use goal setting skills to enhance health.
  • Standard 7 - Students will demonstrate the ability to practice health-enhancing behaviors and avoid or reduce health risks.

 

Accessibility

Signs and Symptoms

Treatment and Relapse

Ryan's Story

Avi and Julie's Story

 

Tragedy and Hope: The Brain on Autopilot Lesson

Grades 9-12 - One class period

 

Program Segments

 

Objectives

Students will be able to:

  • Understand how drugs affect the brain
  • Relate drug addiction to other bodily needs

 

Instructional Resources

 

Vocabulary

Addiction, tolerance, withdrawal

 

Procedures

  1. Students will watch the Tragedy and Hope Stories of Painkiller Addiction segments featuring Ryan and Dr. Blondell.
  2. The facilitator will start a class discussion based on the program segments.
    1. In regards to Ryan’s Story – have any of the students felt compelled to act on a feeling? For example, have they ever felt compelled to continue eating even though they were full?
    2. Dr. Blondell’s Segment – how many students agree with the statement about “brains being on autopilot?” How does a person overcome “autopilot?” Can they?
  3. The facilitator will distribute the Quote Worksheet and students will review the quotes from the program given by Ryan and Dr. Blondell. 
  4. Students will complete the Quote Worksheet.

 

Assessment Task

Students should actively participate in the class discussion on decision making and how the brain works. Students will provide a written response to both of the quotes from Tragedy and Hope Stories of Painkiller Addiction on the Quote Worksheet.

 

Extension Activity

Have the students write a poem or song lyrics that contain their own analogy about addiction, hunger, and/or thirst and how the body and brain react to those needs.

 

National Health Standards

  • Standard 2- Students will analyze the influence of family, peers, culture, media, technology, and other factors on health behaviors.
  • Standard 5 - Students will demonstrate the ability to use decision making skills to enhance health.
  • Standard 7 - Students will demonstrate the ability to practice health-enhancing behaviors and avoid or reduce health risks.

Ryan's Story

The Science of Addiction

 

 

Tragedy and Hope: Prescription Drug Abuse Awareness Campaign Lesson

Grades 9-12 - Four class periods

 

Program Segments

 

Objectives

Students will be able to:

  • Understand how people are able to obtain prescription drugs
  • Offer preventative measures to combat the control and supply of prescription medications

 

Instructional Resources

  • Tragedy and Hope Stories of Painkiller Addiction
  • ISTOP legislation article
  • Poster board
  • Markers, colored pencils, other art supplies
  • Access to computers with PowerPoint

 

Vocabulary

Opioids, over-the-counter drugs, prescription drugs

 

Focus Questions

  1. What policy or laws could be developed and enforced to combat prescription drug abuse?
  2. How can I help or possibly prevent someone abusing prescription drugs?
  3. How are prescription pain medications being illegally distributed and obtained?

 

Procedures

  1. Students will watch Tragedy and Hope Stories of Painkiller Addiction.
  2. The facilitator will ask the students to think about how Michael, Brandie, and Christopher were first able to obtain drugs. How can ANYONE obtain drugs? Answers will be written on a Smartboard, chalkboard, or paper large enough for the whole class to see. Students should include examples from the stories in the program.
    1. Michael obtained prescription drugs initially from his doctor for Crohn’s disease.
    2. Brandie initially got them from a friend at work.
    3. Consider old prescriptions at home, friends, doctors, and internet.
  3. In the second class period students will view the Accessibility program segment.
  4. The facilitator will distribute the article on the ISTOP legislation. Have a student or students read the article out loud. Have a discussion about this legislation. How will this combat prescription drug abuse?
  5. The students should then be split up into groups of 4 or 5. Using what they learned from the ISTOP legislation article and the list of ways to obtain drugs, each group will think about other possible solutions and or regulations as to how we can better control prescription drug abuse.
  6. In the third class period students will view the Parent Advocacy program segment.
  7. The students will develop an awareness campaign based on their ideas. Students will create posters and flyers for their idea. Depending on time availability and/or access to technology, groups may create videos to use in their campaign.
  8. In the fourth class period each group will present their ideas and awareness campaigns to the class. A PowerPoint presentation and other created materials will be shown.

 

Assessment Task

Students will develop an awareness campaign to combat prescription drug abuse. Groups of students will turn in posters and flyers. They will complete a class presentation using PowerPoint.

 

Extension Activities

  • Have the students write a letter to a politician (senator, council member etc.) sharing their ideas on how society can be more proactive in combating prescription drug abuse. What policy or laws could be put into effect that would help control the abuse of prescription medications?
  • Have the students develop a petition based on their prescription drug policy/laws ideas. They should share important information about prescription drug abuse with ten people (not in their class) and have them sign the petition.
  • Have students design a prescription drug-free pledge poster. Get other students in the school to sign the poster.

 

National Health Standards

  • Standard 1- Students will comprehend concepts related to health promotion and disease prevention to enhance health.
  • Standard 2- Students will analyze the influence of family, peers, culture, media, technology, and other factors on health behaviors.
  • Standard 8 – Students will demonstrate the ability to advocate for personal, family, and community health.

 

Entire Program

Accessibility

Parent Advocacy

 

 

Tragedy and Hope: Contemplating Nature vs. Nurture Lesson

Grades 6-12 - One class period

 

Program Segment

 

Objectives

Students will be able to:

  • Determine what factors influence one’s susceptibility to addiction
  • Identify environmental protective and risk factors
  • Recognize personal risk of addiction based on family history

 

Instructional Resources

 

Vocabulary

Addiction, “addiction genes”, coping skills, environmental risk factors, genetic predisposition, protective factors, withdrawal symptoms

 

Procedures

  1. Students will watch the segment from Tragedy and Hope Stories of Painkiller Addiction.
  2. The facilitator will distribute the Nature vs. Nurture Fact Sheet.Students will read in small groups or on their own. They can circle any items they would like to discuss or vocabulary words they are unsure of.
  3. After the sheet is read, the class will have a discussion based on facts and the vocabulary words above.The facilitator should be sure to clarify vocabulary terms for as necessary.
  4. The facilitator should pass out the Protective and Risk Factors Worksheet after a brief explanation of what environmental and risk factors are and the different domains they apply to. Students should fill in their sheets independently so they can include factors that relate to their personal lives.
  5. Upon completion, the facilitator will conduct a class discussion to examine examples that fall under each domain for both risk and protective factors.
  6. Next, the facilitator will explain the Family History Interview. It should be made clear that the Family History Interview will count as part of their grade. Students will realize how essential this information is based on class discussion and the completion of the worksheet.

 

Facilitator Note: The facilitator needs to be aware of the sensitive nature of the Family History Interview. The student does not need to complete this with an immediate family member. Depending on the student’s home life and what they may be going through, this type of discussion could be problematic. The most important thing is the awareness of the topic and that the student gets some information about their genetic family history. The facilitator should also use discretion when grading this portion of the assignment. It should be done on a case by case basis.

 

Assessment Task

Students should be active participants in class discussion, turn in the Protective and Risk Factors Worksheet as well as the Family History Interview.

 

National Health Standards

  • Standard 1- Students will comprehend concepts related to health promotion and disease prevention to enhance health.
  • Standard 2- Students will analyze the influence of family, peers, culture, media, technology, and other factors on health behaviors.
  • Standard 4- Students will demonstrate the ability to use interpersonal communication skills to enhance health and avoid or reduce health risks.
  • Standard 7 – Students will demonstrate the ability to practice health-enhancing behaviors and avoid or reduce health risks.

 

The Science of Addiction

 

Tragedy and Hope: The Cycle of Addiction Lesson

Grades 9-12 - Three class periods

 

Program Segments

 

Objectives

Students will be able to:

  • Understand how families and peers influence decision making
  • Offer preventative techniques to combat the cycle of addiction

 

Instructional Resources

 

Vocabulary

Addiction, opiates

 

Procedures

  1. The facilitator will begin the lesson by asking students why they think people begin using drugs. For what conditions might someone be prescribed drugs by a doctor? What are the reasons for taking any sort of drugs? The facilitator will write their ideas on a Smartboard, chalkboard, or large piece of paper taped where all students can see.
  2. Then the facilitator will ask students why they think that some young people go from experimentation or social use, and even being prescribed medication by their doctor, to more serious drug dependency which can eventually result in addiction, or a physiological dependence on a given drug. What are the triggers of prescription drug abuse? The facilitator will write down any ideas students may have about why drug use escalates also on the Smartboard, chalkboard, or large piece of paper taped where all students can see.
  3. Distribute and discuss the Cycle of Addiction handout. This is a scientific theory about why the use of and experimentation with drugs can lead to addiction.
  4. After students have some understanding of the cycle of addiction, students will split up into work groups based on their Scenario worksheet. Be sure to account for class size for the groups to be even. Example: print 5 of each Scenario for a class of 20 students. Then each group will have 5 students. Choose students to read each Scenario aloud.
  5. Give students enough time to complete the Scenario worksheet and then have a class discussion about their answers.
  6.  The next class period watch the personal stories from Tragedy and Hope Stories of Painkiller Addiction.
  7. Re-distribute the completed Scenario worksheets. Discuss the video segments and the answers that the students wrote before watching the segments. Were there any surprises? What were they?
  8. In the third class period view the bonus segments The Science of Addiction and Signs & Symptoms.
  9. Then have a class discussion about some things that might benefit teens, and where they can go for help, if they are at risk for abusing drugs or prescription medications. Also, what healthy actions could any of the troubled teens from the segments take to feel better and be safe? Some things that might influence decision-making are:
    1. Involvement with family and friends
    2. Satisfaction in outside interests
    3. Able to talk about their feelings in order to ease their pain
    4. Having responsive parents, doctors or counselors to their concerns
    5. Knowing who to talk to or where to get help (a responsive teacher, counselor, parent, family member, friend)
  10. The facilitator should point out the two lists on the board that were made earlier: reasons why young people experiment or begin using drugs and why experimentation, social use or prescriptions can escalate into addiction.
  11. Have any of the items changed? Do the students now know things to add? The facilitator can add or change items and indicate “after video.”
  12. Have the students' ideas changed as a result of learning about the cycle of addiction? If so, how?
  13. What conclusions can they draw about the causes of drug use among young people?
  14. What role does family play in teen decision making? What role do peers play? What role do teachers, coaches, or other adults play?
  15. How can these influences help them make healthful choices?
  16. Do you see peer pressure as positive, negative, or both? Give examples.
  17. Describe a situation in your life where you had to make a difficult choice. What factors influenced you during that time? What choice did you make? Was the outcome positive or negative and why?
  18. Conclude the lesson by having students write an essay of a few paragraphs long. The students should imagine that they are the best friend of a teen in one of the Scenarios (be sure that they indicate who they chose in their essay). What advice would they give them? As their friend, what would they do to support them during this difficult time in their life?

 

Assessment Tasks

Students should actively participate in all class discussions and be a contributing member within their break out groups completing the Prescription Drug Use/Abuse Scenarios worksheets. Students will turn in completed Prescription Drug Use/Abuse Scenario worksheet and the essay.

 

National Health Standards

  • Standard 2 - Students will analyze the influence of family, peers, culture, media, technology, and other factors on health behaviors.
  • Standard 4 - Students will demonstrate the ability to use interpersonal communication skills to enhance health and avoid or reduce health risks.
  • Standard 5 - Students will demonstrate the ability to use decision-making skills to enhance health.
  • Standard 8 - Students will demonstrate the ability to advocate for personal, family, and community health.

 

Ian's Segment

Avi and Julie's Segment

Brandie's Segment

Colleen's Segment

The Science of Addiction

Signs and Symptoms