Family Resources on Roll of the Dice

Lesson Topic

Students use a dice rolling exercise as a metaphor for the statistics of being in a drug or alcohol related car accident.

Essential Question

Why do teens think of themselves as invincible?

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Roll of the Dice – Ashley

If this lesson was used in the classroom: Students considered the consequences and the potential results of driving while intoxicated. In class students discussed how a poor choice can result in serious and irreversible consequences for a person or someone else. In groups students used dice to simulate how the results of choices can appear random and unequal.

Getting Ready for the Conversation

The video for this module features a young adult named Ashley who became physically disabled as a result of a car accident while she was driving intoxicated. Ashley discusses her decision and the resulting lifelong consequences. She also encourages students to learn from her mistakes and think about how others can be a negative influence.

Conversation notes:
The responsibilities that come with driving are often not fully understood by adolescents. Adolescents and adults under 25 have higher serious and deadly vehicle crashes than adults 25 and older. In Ashley’s case she was intoxicated, distracted and not wearing her seat belt. Each of these factors increases the chance of serious injury or death. This lesson also lets parents and mentors frame conversations around responsibility and the influence of friends.

Healthy Children offers “A Message to Parents of Teen Drivers”:

And more background on safe driving:

Healthy Children also offers this Parent-Teen Driving agreement for parents to use:

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration also offers resources to parents:

**For a different take on the dangers of participating in risky behaviors/modes of transportation, please also read The Guardian article on “subway surfing”:
The lethal rise of ‘subway surfing’: ‘If someone slips, it’s game over’ | New York | The Guardian

Constructive Conversation Starters

The first item is for follow-up after viewing the lesson video and participating in class activities.

Why do you think the analogy of dice rolling was used in the class activity? What are the lessons you can learn from Ashley’s experience? Describe why you think so.

Are our current family driving expectations adequate to keep everyone safe? How do we make sure that safety is the main concern every time we drive? What should happen if you ride somewhere with someone and that person becomes intoxicated (be mindful of all intoxicants, not just alcohol)?

What are fun activities that do not involve alcohol/illicit drugs? What are some ways to convince a friend to find something else to do that does not involve alcohol/illicit drugs? Why is it important to have a backup plan for when a friend (or group of friends) becomes intoxicated?

What are the things you consider when choosing friends or people to hang out with? How can you tell if a person or group of people thinks about ways to have fun while also making safe choices?

Discuss various scenarios of unsafe activities and various options for dealing with that situation frequently.

School to Home Resources on Roll of the Dice

Lesson Plan

Learning who her real friends are

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Ashley says, “Something that I’ve also learned through this entire thing is that you really know who your true friends are and that family really is the people that are going to be there for you”. Ashley will never be as mobile and independent as she once was. Besides help with her physical mobility, why are friends and family so important for Ashley?

Making difficult decisions

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Ashley says, “you just feel so odd if you are sober and everyone around you is drunk”. What would Ashley now say is the safest way to deal with a situation like she describes? Why is it so hard for teens to avoid situations like Ashley describes?

A choice can affect many people

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Ashley’s mother Tanya Rawie says, “this has not just impacted Ashley’s life obviously, but every one of the members of the family, close friends, boyfriends, faculty, it’s just a ripple”. Why does Mrs. Rawie mention so many different people? Does a disastrous event like this change the choices that Ashley’s friends will make in the future? Why or why not?

Committing to safer choices

Safe driving involves making safe choices and doing everything possible to encourage others to make safe choices every time that you drive. Read the following sample safe driving agreement suggested by the American Academy of Pediatrics. How could this commitment have prevented Ashley’s injuries? Is this an agreement you and your parents could make? Why is it important to do everything in this agreement every time you (or any teen) drives?

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