Lesson Plans

Weeding Out the Grass: Brain Power!

Created by : 
National Institute on Drug Abuse

Students learn about one of the most commonly abused drugs in the United States, marijuana. A goal of this module is to use science to dispel the myth that this drug is harmless. Marijuana has a strong physical impact on the brain and body. For young people, whose brains are still developing, the effects of marijuana are even more serious. Following the lesson, the Challenge activity is a marijuana bingo game. Additional activities include a research-based presentation, a media log, the student magazine, the CD-ROM, and handouts. This is one of six modules designed for students in grades 6-9 to learn about the brain and the effects of drugs on the body.

What’s In the Lesson Plan: 

  • 1 step-by-step module
  • Resources for students
  • Parents guides
  • Online activities
  • CD-ROM activities (online version)

Grade Level(s): 


Student Skills Targeted: 

  • Explain the short- and long-term effects of marijuana use and the seriousness of these effects.
  • Understanding how THC, the active ingredient in marijuana, disrupts neurotransmission.
  • Explain how marijuana can adversely affect the hippocampus and other parts of the brain.

Time / Duration: 

  • 1 class period


  • Computer with Internet access
  • Printer/copier for student handouts

Alignment with National Standards: 

  • National Science Education Standards


  • English