Check out some of the activities below for ideas and for help with planning your National Drug Facts Week event. It’s going to take some work—but if you can pull it off, your event is going to be awesome and it might just save some lives!
Be sure to read our privacy notice out loud to the audience before your event.
It’s the time of year for New Year’s Resolutions! Have everyone at your gathering pick a New Year’s Resolution “Buddy.” Each participant should write down 3 resolutions for 2014 related to healthy living and staying drug free--- pass out NIDA’s teen booklet for inspiration. Then hand the list to your buddy. Promise that you will help each other stay on course all year long. The lists can be personal, seen only by your buddy, or you can share them and read aloud to the crowd. To get the conversation going, invite a scientist to come and discuss the challenges we face when trying to change our behaviors. Good luck!
Football Trivia party!
With the Super Bowl coming up, why not use it as an incentive to get kids to think about leading healthier lives? Hold a football themed party. Have some of your friends who are big football fans prepare a trivia contest. Questions could be about your favorite Super Bowl team or your own local college or high school football stars. Before you start the contest, issue the Drug IQ Challenge as a warm up. Invite an expert to come and talk about the dangers of performance enhancing drugs. But most of all---have some fun!
Celebrate Ground Hog Day with a Shadow Art party!
Will the ground hog see his shadow during National Drug Facts Week? Set up a big screen; project the National Drug IQ challenge and have paper copies for kids to fill out. Collect the papers but don’t announce the winning scores yet. Then shine a light directly onto the screen for a hand shadow event. Ask for volunteers to participate as contestants. Randomly assign different images (e.g. rabbit, dog, bird) to contestants and see what kind of hand art they can create on the screen. (Find a good “Hand Art” site on the Internet for ideas and let the contestants take a look.) Have kids vote on their favorite hand art images in a secret ballot. Then before giving prizes to the winners of both the IQ Challenge and the hand art contest, have a drug expert address the group (a scientist, doctor, pharmacist etc.) The drug expert will go over the IQ Challenge questions and explain the correct answers. Open it up for more Q and A about drugs. At the end, give prizes!
There’s Snow Business like Show Business!
Hey it’s getting cold outside! Time for an indoor karaoke or talent show. Before the acts start, display the interactive IQ Challenge on a big screen and have your friends fill out the answers on paper. Then---let the show begin! Kids can vote on their favorite acts. But before you award any prizes, announce the best scores for the IQ Challenge competition. For an extra dash of winter, serve “sno cones” or ice cream!
Peer into your Future
Suggest that your school hold an assembly to focus on the dangers of prescription drugs. Project NIDA’ s “PEERx” interactive videos on a large screen. Let the kids shout out their favorite “paths” to choose. Invite a local expert (a doctor, scientist, nurse or pharmacist) to talk about the choices made by the kids. To prepare, check out NIDA’s PEERx site at teens.drugabuse.gov/peerx/.
Hold an Addiction and Art Contest
Art can be a powerful expression of emotion around the theme of drugs and addiction.
For ideas and a toolkit on how to hold an Addiction and Art show, go to the Web site created by artists who support NIDA’s mission: http://www.addictionandart.org
Teens vs. Adults Challenge
Set up a projector that can light up the National Drug IQ Challenge on a big screen. Divide the groups into teens and adults. Have each group take the test and see who is smarter about drugs! You could add some of your own questions using the NIDA for Teens Web site, which is filled with hundreds of facts about drugs. Make up some nice prizes for the group that wins.
Concert with Local Bands
Everybody loves a good concert. Team up with a local band (or two) and find a venue. Decorate the space with homemade “Facts” posters, hand out the "Drug Facts: Shatter the Myths" booklet and have “drop boxes” for people to write down their questions about drugs and drug abuse. Post the answers, with the help of an expert on the web.
Drug Facts Documentaries
Team up with a scientific expert and some talented friends/classmates to make a documentary film or public service announcement on the myths and facts of drugs and drug abuse. Or host a contest where different groups submit their videos/documentaries and have a panel of judges (including at least one scientific expert) determine a winner - post the winning entries online or show them on your morning announcements! And yes---send it to us so we can see it and maybe post it on our site!
Events with Local Sports Celebrity
Team up with a local sports team to host an event. Make a big banner that says “MYTHS” out of paper and ask the local quarterback to throw a football through it! Some local athletes, together with a local scientific expert, could lead the group in asking questions about drug abuse and addiction. Hand out the "Drug Facts: Shatter the Myths" booklet to attendees.
Graffiti Fact Wall
Create a graffiti type wall on poster paper with facts about drugs, slogans, facts/myths, posters, and messages about where to get help. This wall could be in a school or in a high traffic area in the community. Work with your scientific expert to come up with content for your wall. You could also use the "Drug Facts: Shatter the Myths" booklet or www.teens.drugabuse.gov for inspiration.
Come up with creative and fun sports halftime contests – support your school sports teams while shattering the myths about drugs and drug abuse! Have students drop anonymous questions about drugs and drug abuse into a drop box in the school hallways during the week. Have an expert answer these questions during halftime of a game. Hand out the "Drug Facts: Shatter the Myths" booklet at the beginning of the game.
Local Radio Call In Show
Contact your favorite local radio personalities and see if they would be interested in doing a call in show with an expert in drugs and drug abuse science to answer teens’ questions about drugs and drug abuse (make sure the show isn’t during school time so everyone can participate!). Teens could come to the radio station and receive a free "Drug Facts: Shatter the Myths" booklet!
HBO Addiction Q & A
NIDA and HBO have teamed up as co-presenters of an Addiction film series. Check out HBO’s addiction films and show a few of the films for a “movie night.” The Saturday Night in a Dallas ER would be a great one to include. Ask a scientific expert and/or an Emergency Room Doctor to answer questions and share their experience, you can also hand out the "Drug Facts: Shatter the Myths" booklet.
Paint the town in drug fact posters! From corner to corner, you will be spreading the message about the facts of drug abuse. Make sure to talk with your local city authorities to get support for your project. Use the "Drug Facts: Shatter the Myths" booklet as inspiration for your poster! You may be able to get a local printer to print your posters for free.
Hold a contest for teen artists –ask them to use chalk to write one drug Q & A from the "Drug Facts: Shatter the Myths" booklet on a city sidewalk, with an artistic design that represents the question. Pick a panel of judges, including maybe the mayor or a popular local celeb!
Facebook Scavenger Hunt
Scatter clues around your school or community. Offer some drug related trivia questions on Facebook---when kids answer correctly you can give them a tip on how to find the next clue. Whoever gets to the finish line first wins a prize! Get trivia facts from the NIDA Web site, the NIDA for Teens Web site or the "Drug Facts: Shatter the Myths" booklet.
There are many inspirational people in your local community working with recovering addicts, or are themselves in recovery and would love to talk with teens about their experiences. Plan a school assembly for them to share their stories and pair them with an expert to answer teens questions. Hand out the "Drug Facts: Shatter the Myths" booklet.
Use your musical talent to spread the word about drugs and drug abuse. Sponsor a songwriters contest based on real drug facts and offer prizes to the most creative message! Have classmates vote for the best song! Have voters include a question about drugs and place their votes/questions in drop boxes in the hallway. Have a scientific expert answer the questions and post the questions/answers on the website along with the winner of the contest!
Take it to the Streets
Volunteer at community events and hand out information regarding drugs and drug abuse. Download some of our materials to help you with your outreach, or copy some of the Qs & As from the "Drug Facts: Shatter the Myths" booklet. Attend a city or town council meeting and ask for ideas about events.
Hold a trivia night at your school or community center. Whichever team racks up the most points answering facts about drugs will be crowned the Facts on Drugs Champion! Find a local store to offer a cool prize. Check out the NIDA Web site or the NIDA for Teens Web Site with your scientific expert to come up with questions and answers. Hand out the "Drug Facts: Shatter the Myths" booklet to help with the trivia.
Spread the Creativity
I you have a cool idea of your own, please let us know about it----we might want to post it so teens in other cities and town can do it too! Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Looking for more ideas? Try the PEERx Activity Guide, full of suggestions for fun and easy activities focused on preventing prescription drug abuse.