I taught health education for six years at the middle school level.
I taught in a title one school in a very poor area.
Many of my students qualified for free lunch and for some that would be the only meal they ate that day. The illegal use of recreational marijuana was extremely common in the area where I taught, because it had not been legalized in the state yet. It was also very common for students to bring marijuana to school and to try to sell it. When I taught about the harmful effects of recreational marjuana in my health classes, many students disagreed with the information I was teaching. I had to take a different approach to education about marijuana. I decided to allow students to do a project where they did research on their own. I broke students into groups and I gave them each a topic to research and then they had to teach the class about that topic. The topics were: cannabis regulations, medical marijuana dispensaries, medical cannabis benefits, medical marijuana benefits, cannabis knowledge, cannabis DNA testing, and medical cannabis cards. The presentations were interesting and students learned that there is a huge difference between recreational mairjuana use and medical marijuana use. Medical marijuana education is important because it shows students that there are dangers in using recreational marijuana especially if it is purchased illegally, and that medical marijuana use is not for everyone. When students learn all of the facts about a topic, it can help them with their decision making process in the future.