10 Activities for Red Ribbon Week in Schools

Every year from October 23rd to the 31st, families, communities and schools around the nation celebrate Red Ribbon Week for kids of all ages. It’s the country’s largest and longest-running drug abuse prevention campaign, with K-12 students being the primary participants. This article will discuss ten engaging activities for Red Ribbon Week you can bring to your school for a week full of knowledge and drug-free fun.

As educators, we have a responsibility to help our students avoid the pitfalls of drugs and alcohol. Red Ribbon Week classroom activities are some of the most valuable tools teachers have in their arsenal to educate students about drugs. This year, make the most of your Red Ribbon Week by incorporating a few (or all!) of these activities and ideas into your Red Ribbon Week curriculum.

1. Take the Red Ribbon Week Pledge

Every year, millions of students sign the Red Ribbon Campaign pledge to stay drug-free. Red Ribbon Week school ideas like this one get every student involved and allow administrations to add their own creative twist to make things more engaging.

For example, you can create a giant banner with the pledge and have all the students and faculty in your school sign it as a promise to stay healthy and live a happy life. Once everyone has added their signatures, display your banner in a common area for a daily reminder.

2. Enter the Red Ribbon Week Photo Contest

Creative ideas for Red Ribbon Week let children and teens see the power of coming together to work towards a common goal. Every year, the Red Ribbon Organization hosts a photo contest aimed at raising visibility to live drug-free and live creatively.

The contest, which is co-sponsored by the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) and the National Family Partnership (NFP), involves students and faculty decorating their school campus with double-looped red ribbons and incorporating the year’s Red Ribbon theme, which in 2022 is: “Celebrate Life. Live Drug-Free.”

Your school can enter the contest by taking a photo of your decorations and uploading it to the National Red Ribbon Week website. The top five entries that receive the most votes in five designated DEA regions across the country will win $1,000 for the school and an Apple iPad! Contests like these make Red Ribbon Week a special time of year – get your preparations started today.

3. Create the 2023 Red Ribbon Theme

Continuing with Red Ribbon Week school activities that involve contests, why not encourage your students to take a stab at creating the 2023 National Red Ribbon Theme? If your theme is chosen, your school and students will gain national recognition and $500 of Red Ribbon Week merchandise.

4. Take a Red Ribbon Week Themed Group Photo

One of the best Red Ribbon Week school ideas is to take a group photo together. Have all the students wear red and come together in the design of your choice. Pose as a giant ribbon, spell out “Drug-Free,” or come up with an original creative option. These are great pictures for your yearbook and are excellent to share on your school’s social media accounts, raising awareness across the student body.

5. Plant the Promise

One of our favorite Red Ribbon Week classroom activities involves stepping outside. The Plant the Promise campaign is an amazing chance to connect with your class, teach an important lesson they’ll remember, and let them experience the beauty of nature. Students can plant red or yellow flower bulbs during Red Ribbon Week, which will blossom in the spring right in front of your school. Drug-free week activities such as Plant the Promise allow your class to learn the value of hard work – a lesson that will stick with them for years.

Red Ribbon Week For Kids

6. Hold a Video PSA Contest

It’s hard to estimate (and nearly impossible to fathom) just how much time kids spend watching videos on websites like YouTube and TikTok. Activities for Red Ribbon Week are about engaging students in ways that capture their attention. This year you can leverage what’s already working and invite them to create videos discussing the dangers of drugs.

In this activity, you can challenge your students to demonstrate how they celebrate life and live drug-free in a short 30-second video PSA. You can even run a contest throughout the entire school and offer incentives for the winners of each grade.

7. Prompt a Family Conversation

Is Red Ribbon Week for kids only? Not at all! You can share this work with parents to keep them informed and involved in supporting their children. Did you know that children and teens who consistently learn about the dangers of drugs from parents are up to 50% less likely to use substances than those who don’t?

Send a letter to your parent community explaining ways they can talk with their kids to prompt a family conversation. Many parents are unaware of Red Ribbon Week, so sending a letter home providing information about what their kids are learning throughout the week can be highly beneficial to the cause.

8. Red Ribbon Scavenger Hunt

If you’re looking for ideas for Red Ribbon Week that get the whole school involved, try organizing a scavenger hunt for the entire student body! You can hide a red ribbon on the school property each day. The first student to find it and bring it to the principal’s office can receive some official Red Ribbon Week items.

9. Invite a Motivational Speaker

One of the best Red Ribbon Week school ideas is to organize an assembly and invite a motivational speaker to speak to your students. Inviting a motivational speaker is an excellent opportunity for your students to learn first-hand the pitfalls of drug and alcohol abuse. Hearing real stories from real people is a powerful experience and will only help to strengthen drug prevention education throughout the school.

10. Play Red Ribbon Bingo & Other Games

Red Ribbon Week classroom activities for young students need to be as interactive as they are educational. Red Ribbon Week games like bingo are perfect for having fun and learning about the dangers of drugs at the same time. Red Ribbon games emphasize the smart choices kids can make when choosing a drug-free lifestyle and help them absorb great information.

Activities for Red Ribbon Week Are Better With Help From NIMCO, Inc.

With a few activities for Red Ribbon Week up your sleeve, your school can be engaged and informed. We’ve been the official supplier of Red Ribbon Week merchandise, items and gear since 1987 and have everything you need to make your 2022 campaign a celebration of educational excellence. From games and activity guides to full, nationally recognized curriculums, NIMCO, Inc. remains a fantastic resource for educators to further the cause of drug prevention awareness. Browse our entire selection of products today, and make this year’s Red Ribbon Week classroom activities better than ever.

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