This video contains valuable information to help you understand the topic. (0:14 onwards)
(Note: stats are for NZ)
Discuss what dopamine is and what it does. Think about what you learned in the previous lesson. Talk about dopamine and all habits and addictions eg chips, chocolate etc.
“In nature, rewards usually come only with time and effort. Addictive drugs and behaviors provide a shortcut, flooding the brain with dopamine and other neurotransmitters. Our brains do not have an easy way to withstand the onslaught.
Addictive drugs, for example, can release two to 10 times the amount of dopamine that natural rewards do, and they do it more quickly and more reliably. In a person who becomes addicted, brain receptors become overwhelmed. The brain responds by producing less dopamine or eliminating dopamine receptors—an adaptation similar to turning the volume down on a loudspeaker when noise becomes too loud.” (Understanding Addiction, Harvard Help Guides)
Where would you look for trusted information about the drug methamphetamine. What is ‘the word on the street?’ Why is the ‘the word on the street’ an unreliable information source?
e.g. The person is trying to get you to do something harmful, they are not looking after you but trying to manipulate you. They want you to get addicted.
Can you accurately judge who is looking after your health in the long term? Who is trying to get you to do something dangerous to enable their own behaviour?
Find out the facts. What are the short and long term, psychological and physical effects of the drug methamphetamine on the body?
If you are in the classroom, you can work in groups. Draw around a body to create a poster to hang in the classroom. The information from this lesson will be useful for the next lessons.
For example: healthy skin, good memory, muscles etc. This could be funny, but hopefully it is memorable!