Term 1 2019 - Teachers
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The aim of this e-newsletter is to provide our subscribers with information about new research findings and drug prevention resources, and to share relevant news, conferences and events.

Please help us spread the word by forwarding this newsletter to other teachers in your networks, and encourage them to subscribe at www.positivechoices.org.au. 
Welcome back to another school year! In this issue we focus on alcohol and showcase Positive Choices resources to help you get the facts and educate your students about the effects and harms associated with this drug.

We are also pleased to highlight:
Upcoming Webinar: Promoting Healthy Lifestyles During Adolescence
Wednesday 20th February, 3.30pm AEDT
Presented by: Dr Katrina Champion
This webinar is for teachers, school staff, parents and anyone else seeking information about promoting healthy lifestyles among adolescents. Specifically, this webinar will focus on the Health4Life Initiative, a new school-based digital intervention designed to reduce the risk of chronic disease by modifying key lifestyle habits during adolescence.

Chronic diseases, such as cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, cancers and mental disorders, are the leading cause of death in Australia. Physical inactivity, unhealthy eating, risky alcohol use, smoking, sedentary recreational screen time and poor sleep are the “Big 6” risk factors associated with chronic disease. Although the majority of young people are free of chronic disease, far fewer are free of these risk factors. Providing education about the Big 6 to adolescents is critical to ensure that these risk behaviours do not become entrenched, and to reduce short-term harms such as obesity and mental health problems among youth. 

What time in my state?
Available on demand

Substance Use and Mental Health Among Rural Youth

Presented by Dr Georgina Luscombe, Dr Hazel Dalton, and Ms Nicole Snowdon
This webinar presents current research findings on rural youth wellbeing, substance use and mental health, and discusses strategies and initiatives to reduce the risk of harm.

If you missed this popular webinar you can view the recording on demand.
Alcohol is the most commonly used recreational drug in Australia, and is associated with significant risk of harm, such as physical injury, violence and problems with school. Alcohol use typically begins in adolescence, which can be particularly risky. Young people have less tolerance to the effects of alcohol, and young brains are still developing during adolescence, making them more susceptible to harm from alcohol.
Given how easy it can be for teenagers to get alcohol, it is important to talk to teenagers and educate them about alcohol early. Positive Choices has a range of resources to help you pass on the facts and help keep your students stay safe and make informed decisions.
You might want to start by brushing up on the facts about alcohol, or making sure your students are informed. Our Alcohol factsheet is a good place to start.

It's also important to know how alcohol use can affect the developing teenage brain. You can watch a great summary in this 5-minute video, or watch our 40 minute webinar for a more in-depth look at the research on this topic.

For your students, tools like the recently added Standard Drink Calculator are a great way for them to learn how to monitor their alcohol consumption if they will be drinking. Even if they're not at a drinking age at the moment, it's a good idea to educate them early on this topic. Information and safe consumption guidelines often talk quantity in standard drinks, and many teenagers may equate one standard drink with one glass of alcohol. Learning that this is incorrect will help prepare them for when they may start drinking, and help them to take care of their friends. The Standard Drink Calculator on Positive Choices is an interactive game, where students attempt to pour a single standard drink in a range of glass types, so it's more engaging than trying to learn from a standard drink chart.

Don't forget our range of Quick Activities, including Myths About Alcohol, which encourages students to critically evaluate health advice and spot incorrect information about alcohol they may hear from peers or the media.

There are many more resources to use in your classroom to educate students about alcohol. Visit Positive Choices to start planning your next lesson.
We've been very busy over the last month reviewing new resources to include on the Positive Choices portal. Take a look at the ones below that have passed our checks for appropriateness and a strong evidence-base.
What to expect when you see a psychologist
This video talks about what parents can expect when they seek professional help from a psychologist for their child.
Energy Drinks
This video is from the ABC's Catalyst program, and explores the dangers of energy drinks.
Get Ready: Year 9
This video goes through a typical teenage party scenario, exploring the consequences of drinking alcohol.
Your Brain on LSD and Acid
This video explains what happens in the brain when LSD is taken, gives a brief history of its use and research findings.
The Emergency+ app uses GPS to help a Triple Zero (000) caller provide critical location details to emergency services.
Alcohol and Your Brain
This app contains a 7 minute video and quiz about the effects of alcohol on the brain and body.
Drug Facts for Young People
This comic-book style app focuses on the decision-making process involved when confronted with drugs and alcohol.
Health Direct
This app provides trusted health information and advice and is funded by the governments of Australia.
Integrity and Anti-Doping in Sport
This school lesson plan provides an introduction to integrity and anti-doping in sport.
Illicit Drugs in Sport
This school lesson plan provides an introduction to illicit drugs in sport and associated issues.
Something you'd like to see on Positive Choices that isn't there? We welcome ideas for new content, so send us an email at info@positivechoices.org.au, and we'll look into it.
Listen to the Positive Choices team present, or catch up with us at our booth, at these upcoming events.
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