DEA Chasing the Dragon: The Life of an Opiate Addict


This documentary gives a face to the lurking evil of opiate addiction that statistics measure to be at epidemic levels. Federal, state, and local law enforcement officers are asking educational institutions across the country to inform teenagers of the hazards of drug abuse and expose the truth about the opiate epidemic.

The purpose of this film and follow-up activities is to raise awareness of drug abuse and the profound downward spiral that can be caused by opiate addiction. The film content has been provided by actual people who abused opiates or whose children abused opiates. They selflessly shared their unfiltered, impassioned, unscripted, and painful accounts to try to stop other people from taking drugs and destroying lives.

The objectives of the discussion guide are to have students process and interact with the content covered in the film and then answer questions to demonstrate their understanding of the material. Some of the questions ask for direct recall of information while others require students to synthesize content and respond. An affective objective—or one that is influenced by emotions—is to have students reflect on how their own lives and lives of family members could be ruined if they or their friends were addicted to opiates. Discussion facilitators should ask students to share their personal feelings, thoughts, and concerns. A final objective is to get students to be proactive in the fight against drug abuse. A set of culminating activities asks students to integrate ideas by designing diagrams, writing proposals, using social media, creating art projects, and planning initiatives.

Students are not watching this film, answering questions, and completing projects to pass a test; they are doing this to save lives—maybe even their own.

The film includes strong language, intense content, and graphic images.


Chasing the Dragon: Study Guide for Educators

  • This guide is intended to help stimulate thoughtful and honest dialogue about this epidemic. Through these conversations, we hope to prevent additional students from becoming victims.

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News: Chasing the Dragon: Raising Awareness of Opioid Addiction

Video Trailer: Chasing the Dragon

Date: 2016
Format: Video, Online Resource
Publisher: and the

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