The Game Show – Knowing the Risks of Alcohol and Other Drugs

This activity includes 15 (potentially one or two more) alcohol and other drug risk–related items and their correct responses. Having teams respond to these items and discussing the correct result will be time consuming. The best way to maximize discussion of the risks is to divide the items in half and complete the game over two classes. The students will be given the questions at the start of each class to discuss in teams before the game begins. The statements have been divided into two handouts so that teams cannot research their responses between the first and second classes.

  1. Begin the session by explaining to the class that research has shown that, when making decisions about trying alcohol and other drugs, teenagers are often influenced by their perception and knowledge of what risks are connected to using a specific substance. The risks can include health effects and getting into trouble with the law. In addition, one substance may carry greater or lesser risks than another substance. Tell the class that the next session or two will take a look at how “risk-wise” they are and will give them the opportunity to compete in a game.

  2. Divide the class into teams of five to six students. Explain that each team is going to be given a sheet of seven to eight statements and asked to decide whether they agree or disagree with each statement. They will have about 10 minutes to do this. They can then appoint a team “mouth” to represent the team in a competition against other teams to come up with the most correct responses to the statements. Once the groups are formed, give each team a copy of Student Handout 8.A—Risk-Wise, Part One.

  3. After the teams have worked for 10 minutes, line up the team “mouths” at the front of the class and give each “mouth” a noisemaker. Explain that you are going to read each statement, and the “mouths” are to make their noise as fast as they can to see who gets to go first. Ask a student to volunteer to be the scorekeeper and ask them to keep track of each team’s responses.

  4. Once the teams have responded to all the questions on Student Handout 8.A—Risk-Wise, Part One, read out the correct response to each item from the responses and discuss it with the students. Have the scorekeeper give each team one point for their correct responses and no points for their incorrect responses.

  5. Repeat steps 2 through 4 in the second class, using the same teams and “mouths” and Student Handout 8.B—Risk-Wise, Part Two. Add up the scores to determine the winning team.

  6. Once all the questions from the two student handouts have been discussed, ask the class to describe and draw conclusions from what they have learned from the activity about the risks of alcohol, cannabis, and other drugs.