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Brain Power: Grades 2-3

Procedures/Discussion Questions

  1. Conduct a class brainstorming session about drugs. Ask students what drugs they are familiar with and what they know about each drug. For example, do they know what the drug does? Do they know whether the drug is effective? Write down their responses on a sheet of paper.
  2. Tell the students that they will be learning about the following drugs: aspirin/Tylenol, fluoride, immunizations, antibiotics, alcohol, caffeine, nicotine, and illegal drugs. Explain that they will be solving riddles about these substances.
  3. Decide how you want to conduct this activity.
    • One option is to read the riddles to the class and have them solve the riddles as a group.
    • Another is to divide the class into teams, read the riddles, and then give a point to whichever team comes up with the correct answer first.
    • You could also divide the students into groups of three and have each student perform one of the following jobs: reader, responder, or recorder. The reader will ask the questions identified on the fact sheet; the responder will answer them; and the recorder will write down the responses on the recording sheet. If you decide to do the activity this way, make sure that each student has a chance to do each job.
  4. The fact sheets for each substance are at the end of the guide. If you are going to do the activity as a class, you probably don’t have to make extra copies. Depending on your teaching approach, decide whether you are going to distribute them to the class.

Discussion Questions

  1. Use the riddles on the handout "Learn More About Drugs" to give the students more information about each of these substances. Use the teaching strategy that works best with your students.
  2. Lead a discussion about the different drugs the students learned about and answer any questions they may have. As a class, make a Venn diagram. One circle should say "Drugs That Help the Body," and the other circle should say "Drugs That Hurt the Body."
  3. Are there any drugs that are in both circles? Which ones are they? Are some more helpful than harmful? More harmful than helpful? Discuss how a drug can be both helpful and harmful.
  4. Have each student or group make a list of the most important things to know about the effects of drugs on the body. Then have each student or group share the lists. Students may want to create a brochure or poster identifying the effects different drugs have on the body. Students can use the trading cards to reinforce what they learned.

This page was last updated September 2012

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NIDA. (2012, September 1). Brain Power: Grades 2-3. Retrieved from https://www.drugabuse.gov/publications/brain-power/brain-power-grades-2-3

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