Recently I gave a talk to the eighth grade girls at a local Catholic school. The whole day was centered around peer pressure and making good decisions. My job was to talk with the girls a little bit about relationships.
We laid the foundation with a chat about our relationship with God and family and then we moved into the “hotter” topics: namely friendships with other girls and relationships with boys (oh man!).
For our discussion about boys, we focused on purity and modesty. We used the magazine picture exercise I used previously with my Appleseeds group. Again, it was a huge success and a great way for the girls to get a tangible idea of what modesty is.
Then, came the dice game. We played this when I was in high school and it’s actually one of the only things I remember from that dreaded place (and I didn’t graduate THAT long ago!).
You have a giant dice for the girls to roll. Rolling the dice represents having sex and the number it lands on represents the consequences of that choice.
- #1 = STD,
- #2 = Pregnancy,
- #3 = Broken heart
- The other numbers let you go without consequence
I think the girls may have been a LITTLE young for the game, because after I explained the “rules” they were practically jumping out of their seats to play. Not exactly the response I was going for.
Nevertheless, we proceeded, trying to empasize the seriousness of the consequences. Some of the notecards I made up with the consequences written out had extra notes, such as Pregnancy with complications or STD and permanent infertility. As we went around the room and each girl took her turn, there was one girl who responded “I don’t want to roll the dice.” “That’s okay”, I said and started to move on when the room errupted with prods and pushes from her classmates “Come on! You have to!” “Everyone did it!” “You have to play the game!”.
Before I could say she didn’t have to play, she rose from her chair and came up to the dice. “Fine! I’ll do it,” she said. And wouldn’t you know it, she was the only girl in the room to “get pregnant.” When the game concluded, I talked about how peer pressure affected her and how she alone has to live with the consequences now. She didn’t want to do it, but allowed herself to be pressured into rolling the dice and ended up “pregnant” as a result. Unfortunately, this may not be too far off from reality for many of the girls in our ministries.
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