Empowering Teens: Breaking Free from Tobacco's Grip
SAY ‘NO’ TO TOBACCO - Rukmini Rai (PGT) English
Tobacco use is reaching pandemic levels among teenagers. We as educators need to work together against it. In view of the deep-rooted nature, the eradication of tobacco habit is a must to bring about social change.
Tobacco has not brought happiness to anyone but has definitely taken several lives. Teenagers need to understand that to live long and healthy one must be an active participant of games, activities, school clubs, etc to channelize their potential and not allow boredom to set in.
Tobacco usage seems ‘trendy’ and following the ‘fad’ of course leads to acceptance among peers! They love to do exactly what they are forbidden to do. Could we adults turn around and engage them in a more productive scheme of action rather than a moral lecture?
Teenagers love attention by engaging themselves in the consumption of tobacco, it gives them a ‘high’ and they feel validation in the world of illusion. I feel we shouldn't use ‘ Toxic Words’. The more we use the words ‘Don’t smoke’ . ‘Don’t wape they love to do exactly the same because they do not hear ‘Don’t’.
We need to change our approach in order to get a better response:
VISUAL ILLUSTRATION- Act out a play in which a student climbs the ladder to a higher place than others. Ask others to predict what are the losses of that learner who is stuck at the top. ( Guide the learners to realize that one is alone, missing out on life, etc)
PEER/ PEAR SCOTTING- Peer affection is a lot more than pressure. Let us make pairs voluntarily and scribble them on a chart cut out as a pear. The individuals will be responsible for academic growth as well as good influence. If either of the pair notices a lapse, then he/she may seek an adult’s intervention.
CLUB SYSTEM: If the school permits then teenagers have a great opportunity to express their flair by joining a club of his/her love. Channelizing their energy and the small achievements within the school will give them the ‘high ‘ that they seek artificially.
Well, we all can put on our creative caps to influence the growing adolescents into responsible adults in a tobacco-free environment.