Ryan Kicks-Off an Anti-Smoking Education Effort Targeting Third-Grade Students Statewide on Anti-Smoking Education Effort
CHICAGO, Jan. 14 /PRNewswire/ -- Attorney General Jim Ryan, as a result of the historic $9.1 billion tobacco settlement, will kick-off an anti-smoking education effort targeting third-grade students across the state.
Ryan's office will send out the ``Feel Good, Don't Smoke'' campaign materials this week providing anti-smoking messages including special calendars and posters designed by elementary school students last year. Posters, calendars and other educational material will be sent to third grade classrooms at more than 2,500 public and private schools statewide.
``Finally, because of the tobacco settlement, Illinois is able to halt the illegal marketing of tobacco to children and to fight back against those poisonous messages with strong messages of its own,'' Attorney General Ryan said. ``Our children need to know about the dangers of tobacco. They need to know that it's all right to resist peer pressure.''
Ryan's staff did extensive research to find that experts recommend targeting children in the third grade -- it is then, experts say, that children start to form life changing opinions and habits.
Ryan also noted that the best way to reach children is often through other children -- which is why he organized a contest last year to develop anti-smoking billboards, posters and the calendars. Winners of that contest were chosen over the summer. Three winners were chosen for billboards and 12 others were chosen to be used for the anti-smoking calendar.
In addition to the calendars, Ryan is using a fictional character named ``Al Right'' created by his staff, to help children identify and make the right choices about issues like peer pressure and smoking.