Lesson 4.2: Non-Medical Drug Use

Students will explore making safe decisions related to non-medical drug use. . 


This lesson is aligned with the following learning outcomes from the NL Grade 4 Health Curriculum:

1. Identify some reasons why people use drugs for non-medicinal purposes.
2. Recognize that nicotine and caffeine are drugs.
3. Identify the reasons why people do or do not smoke.
4. Discuss some of the physiological effects of smoking.
5. Describe the short term and long term effects of smoking.
6. Identify a number of activities to do instead of smoking.
7. Outline the effects of environmental tobacco smoke (ETS).
8. Suggest ways to protect oneself from environmental tobacco smoke (ETS).

1. Identify recreational activities: hobbies, physical activity or creative pursuits.

1. Realize that one’s decisions may affect other people.
2. Outline the steps to follow in decision making. 

Lesson Plan


Activity 1: Medical vs Non-Medical Drugs

As a class, students will categorize drugs into categories. You may need to review some of the substances in this activity with students. 

FACE Decision-Making Model

For Activities 2 and 3, students will use the FACE Decision-Making Model to help guide their decision-making processes for each scenario. The Factors Influencing Decision-Making infographic may also be helpful as a reference throughout these activities.

Activity 2: Curious About Cigarettes

Students are presented with a scenario in which a family member leaves a pack of cigarettes on the kitchen counter after a family gathering and they must decide what to do. Students use the FACE Decision-Making Model to help them decide what they would do in this situation. The accompanying activity sheets are available as a Jamboard and Google Docs.

Activity 3: Vaping
This scenario provides students with the opportunity to think critically about vaping and reasons why one chooses to or not to vape. This activity is available as both a PDF and a Google Docs.


Activity 4: Exit Card- Healthy Activities
This activity provides students an opportunity to reflect on healthy activities that they enjoy doing alone, with others, outdoors, or indoors. This activity is available as a PDF and Google Docs. 

Substance Snapshots

Substance Snapshots aim to provide educators with knowledge surrounding specific substances, classes of substances, and methods of consumption. These documents are intended to support educators in their delivery of drug education. They are not for direct use by elementary students. 

The substance snapshots supporting this lesson plan include: