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Life Education

April 29th, 2016

life-education-vanI remember the time the Life Education van came to my primary school. It was a very exciting day and I wrote about it in my diary.

life van diary

31/3/1993 Boy time flies. Tomorrow we have netball. Today the Life Education van came. It was really good. I can’t wait for Friday. We are leaving school early to go to Melbourne. Then on Sunday I’m going to Emma’s party. I made a really nice broach in art yesterday.

The fact that I mentioned at least five unconnected topics in the same paragraph, of which the Life Education van was only one belies its importance to me. I’ve forgotten the broach, trip to Melbourne and most of Emma’s party but the Life Education van is clear in my mind.

What I remember is that the Life Education van’s visit came as a complete surprise to me and the rest of my Grade 5/6 class. We thought we were in for an afternoon of Maths when suddenly we were ushered up the steps of the most exciting van you could imagine (think mobile library, but better).

I remember that it was terribly exciting but the only bit of the presentation that I clearly recall is a hand puppet called Harold singing a song that went:

If you smoke you’re gonna choke

And if you drink you’re gonna feel real blue

Then a chorus of chipmunks said ‘Come on Harold, let’s go behind the dunnies for a smoke.’

Harold, you’ve got to make a decision

I think there must have been more to the Life Education van than that because the program made a big impression on me and my classmates. We all pledged to never try smoking. We were told there would be peer pressure at high school but it was hard to imagine giving in to it given the horrors of smoking and the fact that it was clearly a completely stupid thing to do.

When I got home that night I told my older sister, who was in Year 7, about the Life Education van and that no-one in my class would ever smoke. ‘Everyone says that,’ she said. ‘But it’s different in high school.’

I knew she was wrong.

Posted in Diaries, School

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