keepin’ it REAL

This is a summary of an article in Scientific American magazine
written by Amy Nordrum, dated Sep. 10, 2014.

Over the past few years scientists have helped replace the old curriculum of the D.A.R.E. anti-drug-abuse program with a course based on a few concepts which should make the training more effective for today’s students.

The course is called keepin’ it REAL and differs dramatically from the D.A.R.E. program—replacing boring facts and lectures with interactive lessons which present stories meant to help kids make better decisions.

“It’s not an anti-drug program,” says Michelle Miller-Day, co-developer of the new curriculum and a communications researcher at Chapman University.

keepin’ it REAL is about honesty and safety and responsibility. The program has reduced substance abuse and maintained anti-drug attitudes over time among students in early trials—something which largely eluded the former program.

Summary 2: Using innovative educational techniques to educate a student’s judgment works.

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