West Virginia University Logo

Lesson 12

Title: Time In A Bottle

Grade: Fifth
Time: 50-60 minutes

Learner Outcomes:

  1. Using the writing process, students will write about their plans and goals for the future.
  2. Through role playing, students will identify and demonstrate decision-making skills as they relate to the use of alcohol.
  3. Through role playing, students will demonstrate their awareness of the consequences of the use of alcohol.
  4. Through discussion and a follow-up writing activity, students will demonstrate their awareness of the long-term consequences of the use of alcohol and how their decisions can affect their futures.


  • paper
  • pen
  • bottle with caps
  • situations to role play


Discussion: Following a unit about careers, students will discuss their personal interests in career choices.

Writing: Students will be instructed to imagine what their own life will be like in the next 20 years. At this time they will write about their dreams for the future. In their narrative students will be encouraged to include the following:

  1. What my high school years will be like.
  2. What I want to do in college.
  3. What I dream about becoming.
  4. Where I will live.
  5. What places I will go.
  6. People I dream about meeting.
  7. What I imagine my life to be like in the next 20 years.

At the end of the writing assignment each student will fold their paper and seal it in a bottle.

Role Playing: Students will be given situations in which they will have to make decisions about accepting or refusing alcohol. Groups will be assigned to role play the following situations .

  1. You have just moved into a new neighborhood. Someone invites you to a party to meet new friends. They also tell you to bring some of your parent's beer or alcohol.

    Be sure to include the following in your role playing:

    1. Possible choices.
    2. Possible consequences.
    3. Risks involved.
  2. Your parents have allowed you to drive their car to a friend's house. No one is home and you and your friend make a wrong decision and drink some beer. Now your friend wants you to drive the two of you to the mall.

    Be sure to include the following in your role playing:

    1. Risks involved.
    2. Consequences you may have to live with.
    3. Choices you have.
  3. You have been associating with a group of friends that are skipping school activities and drinking instead. This is uncomfortable for you but you are reluctant to leave the group because you like the sense of belonging. The peer pressure is getting greater and your friends are giving you a hard time about not drinking with them.

    Be sure to include the following in your role playing:

    1. Ways to say no.
    2. Other choices.
    3. Consequences for your actions.


At the end of the situation role playing students will be instructed to think back to the future they dream about and how it might change if wrong decisions are made about alcohol use. A follow-up activity for the next day and for an assessment of the lesson, students will write how they think their dreams in the bottle could be shattered if they choose to use alcohol. Instruct students to include in the narrative what choices they might consider instead of using alcohol, consequences of using alcohol, and problems they think they may encounter with these decisions in their future.

Internet Resources:

The 411 for Under 21

NCADD Youth Information