Session 2: Making Our Own Choices
1. Prepare enough blank index cards for each student to receive one card. If you do not have index cards, you can cut a blank sheet of paper into four squares to make cards.
2. Print out enough copies of Handout 2: Adult Interview for each student to receive one copy.
3. Review example ads in PowerPoint. If you do not have PowerPoint capabilities, print the example ads.
|Activities||Materials and Teacher 411 Resources|
1. Introduction5 minutes
Teacher 411 Resources:
2. Direct Instruction5-10 minutes
|3. Work Time
| Teacher Materials:
Teacher 411 Resources:
approx. 40 minutes
- Identify the percentage of E-cigarette users in high school and middle school and describe nonsmokers as the majority.
- Discover the amount of money the tobacco and E-cigarette industry spends on advertising its products.
- Recognize the covert methods that the tobacco and E-cigarette industry uses to attract new E-cigarette users.
- Analyze some of the propaganda techniques tobacco and E-cigarette companies use to sell their brand of E-cigarette.
- Identify reasons why teens may begin using E-cigarettes.
- Identify positive alternatives to using E-cigarettes.
Suggested Length: approx. 40 minutes
- Ask students to guess the following on scratch paper: What percentage of middle schoolers smoke E-cigarettes? What percentage of 11th graders smoke E-cigarettes?
- Ask students to share their guesses.
- Reveal the actual numbers: Only 11.3% of high-schoolers and 4.3% of middle schoolers have smoked an E-cigarette in the last 30 days.
- Discuss: Most teenagers surveyed disapproved of E-cigarette use. Very few high schoolers, and even fewer middle school students, smoke E-cigarettes. Ask: Are these numbers surprising? Why do you think students’ estimates are usually higher than the actual number? (possible answers: advertising, YouTube and social media, bragging, etc.)
Note: Students often overestimate the number of people they think use E-cigarettes, just as they do with conventional cigarettes. By presenting facts about the teen prevalence of E-cigarette usage, students will understand that not “everyone does it.”
- Explain: Advertisers think you are easily influenced by what others do, so they try to make it seem like everyone smokes. In reality, only a very small percentage of teens use E-cigarettes.
- Explain the two types of advertising: Direct and Indirect
- Direct advertising is clearly paid for by the tobacco and E-cigarette industry (billboards, television, internet, radio, magazine ads).
- Indirect advertising tries to disguise the fact that it’s an ad.
Explain Indirect advertising includes the following advertising methods:
- Social Media: Companies pay people on social media to make their product look “cool”. Websites, blogs, YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram, YouTube & Vine Videos. Tries to make E-cigarettes look rebellious, fun, attractive or cool, while leaving out information about the harmful consequences (e.g. nicotine addiction).
- Movies: Tobacco and E-cigarette companies pay actors to smoke their brands in movies. You often see characters reaching for a certain brand of cigarette or E-cigarette in a tense or romantic situation, which reinforces the myth that smoking is helpful or even needed in these situations.
- Magazine articles: Some magazine publishers decide to limit or not include articles on the negative consequences of using tobacco and E-cigarettes.
- Display CDC graph titled “E-cigarette use among youth is rising as E-cigarette advertising grows.”
- Discuss: As a class, make observations about the graph. Possible observations: As dollars spent by the industry on advertising rose, youth E-cigarette use also rose. Advertisement spending seems to work in getting young people to try E-cigarettes. Youth E-cigarette use has increased since 2011. Advertisers spent $120 million on advertising in 2014.
- Share the statistic: $9.325 billion is spent every year on tobacco and E-cigarette advertising. That’s more than $25 million every day, or more than $1 million every hour.
- Ask: How are tobacco companies able to afford to spend billions annually on advertising? (Many of their customers are addicted to their products. A lot of product is sold to pay for the advertising)
- Review: Don’t forget that much of the social media and YouTube plugs you see are paid for by the industry! In reality, only a very small percentage of teens use E-cigarettes.
Activity 1: Analyzing Ads (10-15 min.)
- Ask students to assemble into their small groups.
- Ask Peer Group Facilitators to turn to Peer Group Facilitator Sheet 2: E-cigarette Advertising Appeals and display example ads on the PowerPoint. Note: If you do not have PowerPoint capabilities, you can print the example ads and pass them around from group to group.
- Ask Peer Group Facilitators to record their group’s reactions to each ad and identify the advertising appeals that were used. Specifically address the following: How does the ad portray E-cigarette use?
- Ask each Peer Group Facilitator to report 2-3 of their group’s reactions to the ads.
- Example Ad 1:Health, Freedom
- Example Ad 2: Flavors, Social Life
- Example Ad 3: Celebrities, Glamorous
- Example Ad 4: Freedom, Masculinity
- Example Ad 5: Social Life, Glamorous, Masculinity
- Ask: How do you feel about the possibility of becoming an addict? How would it feel to become dependent on a substance, to need it to feel okay?
- Ask: Do the ads for E-cigarettes reflect the reality of addiction?
Activity 2: Reasons Why Young People Experiment with E-cigarettes and Positive Alternatives (10 min.)
- Distribute an index card or cut up paper square to each student.
- Ask students to independently record responses to the following question on the front side of their index card: Why might young people experiment with E-cigarettes? On the back side, record responses to the following question: What are some positive things young people can do instead of using E-cigarettes?
Example Reasons for Use: to rebel, because they are curious, to be accepted, to look cool, friends use it, to look older, parents use it, to taste new flavors. Example Positive Alternatives: join sports team/club, invite friends to a movie or concert, workout/exercise, try new foods, volunteer to take on more responsibility
- Collect the index cards and read responses aloud to the class. Make a list of the responses on the board.
- Discuss the homework from the previous session (Handout 1: Where Do You Stand?)
- Assign Adult Interview
- Emphasize that students should interview one of their parents or guardians, but if they cannot arrange that, they should find another adult to interview.
- Distribute Handout 2: Adult Interview to each student, and then either read aloud, or call on a Peer Group Facilitator to read aloud the directions.