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What I Have Learned in G.R.A.D.E


By:  Skye Downey (11) as of April, 2008


I learned that G.R.A.D.E. stands for Gang Resistance and Drug Education.  During the past several months I have learned a lot of interesting and valuable information relating to gangs and drugs. 


I learned words such as goals, pride and self-esteem and how each word plays an important role in our lives.  Without at least one goal we have nothing to strive for or take pride in which then lowers our self-esteem.  People with low self-esteem become followers. As a follower it is easy to get caught up with the drug use and the gangs.  If every person had at least one goal to strive for there might not be as much drug use or as many gang members.


I learned how to resolve conflicts. There are several ways to resolve conflicts based on the situation and people involved but regardless all resolutions involve talking things out.


I learned that laws are made to help and to protect us.  If you break the laws you suffer consequences.  If you follow the laws you can be rewarded highly with respect from others and certain privileges which can lead to high self-esteem and obtaining the goals you have set for yourself.


I also learned about the various drugs including tobacco and how harmful it is to your body and mind.  I learned how people try to sell some of these things through different advertising strategies because the companies or individuals want to make money.


In the end the most important thing I learned was that we are all responsible for our own actions.  Every day we should try to make good decisions that will benefit us.  Being in a gang and/or doing drugs are bad.  If we are leaders keeping our goals in mind we are more likely to stay out trouble, not do drugs and/or not join a gang.  Therefore, we will achieve more in life.