Students experience the perils of drunk driving — on their feet


Students were educated on the dangers of drug and alcohol use last week.

Red Ribbon Week is an alcohol, tobacco, drug, and violence prevention awareness campaign observed annually in October. Red Ribbon Week 2013 was celebrated in Glen Rock High School through the Red Ribbon Fair held in the gymnasium for all Physical Education periods.

The Physical Education teachers Kelly Dowell, Bonnie Zimmermann, Sue Sileo, Chris Fox, Joe Sutera, Jim Kurz, Dan Morgan, and Mike Escalante — and the Student Assistance Counselor, Heather Wombough — ran presentations and activity stations throughout the gym.

The Red Ribbon Fair activities included:

  • Natural High Videos: Students watched celebrities share their motivation for a drug-free life
  • Dollar Bill Jump: Students explored the tendency to demonstrate poor judgment while under the influence of substances
  • All Tied Up: Students were able to visualize the process of becoming addicted to substances
  • Liver Overload: Students were able to simulate, using tennis balls, the process of intoxication and adverse effects of consuming alcohol
  • Sobriety Test: Using drunk-driving goggles, students were able to take field sobriety tests and see how their senses are affected by substances
  • Do This Instead: Students came up with alternatives to substance use and put these ideas on a banner

Student Assistant Counselor, Ms. Wombough, said, “I was very pleased with how the Red Ribbon Fair turned out. The Physical Education teachers worked very hard to make the day a success, and the students seemed extremely engaged in the presentation.  The activities were able to reach the students in an innovative way that a standard assembly or lecture could not.”

While students might not initially see the importance of Red Ribbon week and the activities, each station demonstrates to the students the effects of drugs in a way that is easy to understand and relate to.

“I think that Red Ribbon Week is extremely important and beneficial.  While we obviously seek to promote the values of Red Ribbon Week (and all other awareness weeks) throughout the year, having a set time to really focus on each individual message is very helpful,” said Mr. Wombough.

Ms. Wombough, who organized part of the fair, explained that Red Ribbon Week borrowed from the ideas of the classroom.

“It’s like English class: teachers don’t spend their class-time teaching about grammar every single period, but they still hope to reinforce proper grammar with all of the assignments throughout the year,” she said. “The awareness weeks are like the lessons focused specifically on grammar while the messages we attempt to promote throughout the year are like the essays.  Both are important, and neither are really effective without the other.”