PLAN:MEDICAL MARIJUANA - LEGITIMATE USE OR LEGALIZED ABUSE?
Estimated Time: Approximately 45 minutes/1 class period
controversy with states passing laws legalizing marijuana for medical use stems
from the argument that legalizing this form of drug use could jeopardize all federal
drug laws and result in people abusing the law and using marijuana for recreational
v. medicinal purposes. In addition, the federal government argues that legalizing
marijuana is an interstate commerce issue, thus the law should be established
by the federal government, not the states.
2. Illegal drugs that have been shown to have harmful long-term effects should be allowed for use by patients with chronic medical conditions if doctors feel it will provide them short-term relief from their symptoms.
3. Even though violence from the illegal drug-trade in the U.S. kills hundreds of people every year, laws aimed at prosecuting those who produce and distribute illegal drugs should be waived for medicinal users even though it might cause increased drug use and abuse by recreational users.
2. Have all students stand so they can move around the room to discuss their ideas with one another.
Using the overhead or blackboard, reveal the first Think/Pair/Share question.
After you read the question aloud, give students 30 seconds to think about their
answer. Instruct students that they are NOT allowed to talk. They should use the
next 30 seconds of "thinking time" to decide whether they agree or disagree
4. Once the "thinking time" has ended, direct students to go to the sign that reflects their opinion. Post the "Agree" sign at one end of the room and the "Disagree" sign at the other end of the room. Remind students that the should choose the sign based on their opinions, which they will be required to share in the next step.
5. When all students have moved to the area of the room that reflects their opinion, have them share why they "Agree" or "Disagree" with at least 1 other person in the group. Allow 1-2 minutes for students to share their opinions.
6. Once all students have had a chance to share their opinion with another person who feels similarly, have the group come together to share why they "Agreed" or "Disagreed" with the statement. With one person in the group selected to be the recorder, all group members should share their reasons for their opinions. These reasons should be written on the chart paper so they can be shared later. Allow each group 3 minutes to record all of the reasons for their opinions.
7. Once ideas are recorded, choose one person in each group to be the speaker. This should NOT be the same person who did the recording in the earlier step. Using the ideas from the list, the speaker should share the reasons why the members of his/her group "Agreed" or "Disagreed" with the statement.
8. Complete steps 3-7 above for each of the remaining questions. Remind students that their opinions should drive whether they choose to agree or disagree with each statement.
Once students have completed the Think/Pair/Share activity, have them return to
Part 2: Deciding the Case
10. Share the NewsHour Extra story entitled: "Supreme Court Hears Medical Marijuana Arguments," with the class.
11. After reviewing the story, revisit the Think/Pair/Share questions and have students think about whether or not their opinions about the questions have changed at all because of what they have learned from the NewsHour story.
Ask each student to imagine that s/he is a member of the U.S. Supreme Court. Based
on what they have learned about the medical marijuana debate, how would they rule?
Author Lisa Prososki is an independent educational consultant who taught middle school and high school English, social studies, reading, and technology courses for twelve years. Prososki has worked extensively with PBS authoring and editing many lesson plans for various PBS programs and TeacherSource. In addition to conducting workshops for teachers at various state and national meetings, Prososki also works with many corporate clients creating training programs and materials, facilitating leadership and operations workshops, and providing instructional support for new program rollouts. Prososki has authored one book and also serves as an editor for other writers of instructional materials.
To find out more about opportunities to contribute to this site, contact Leah Clapman at email@example.com.
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