About the Development

Since the program’s inception in 2003, Ask, Listen, Learn: Kids and Alcohol Don’t Mix has reached more than 140 million parents, teachers, and kids. During this time, conversations between parents and kids have increased 69%, while underage drinking has decreased 51% (Monitoring the Future, 2015). 

Recognizing this impact, as well as the constantly evolving landscape of education, Ask, Listen, Learn expanded its efforts into the digital sphere in a creative and engaging way. 

Kids are most fascinated about how their brains and bodies work. With the importance of digital content in mind, we narrowed the program’s focus to the brain, what alcohol does to it, and how that affects kids, for the program and it’s already established audiences: educators, parents, and kids. 

All materials have gone through a series of reviews with teachers, counselors, students and the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA); with each step, we incorporated suggestions and concentrated on how to make each resource valuable for our audiences. 

The scripts of the animations were initially reviewed by our Educational Advisory Board and an Ask, Listen, Learn panel comprised of teachers, counselors, and other experts in education:


 “I love how science-focused these animations are for kids to truly understand the impact of alcohol on the brain and think they’d be perfect for integrating into science or health curriculum.”

Leticia Barr

Leticia Barr

Author of Tech Savvy Mama, former teacher, and member of Responsibility.org’s Educational Advisory Board


“Nice definitions and examples. This is hard stuff, and it’s clearer here than it is going to be in textbooks for sure.”

Heatherle Chambers

Heatherle Chambers

Senior Education Manger, Classroom Champions


“I like the balance explanation, or how alcohol might make you feel sad or angry. Those examples are really important.”

Jeannette Kaplun

Jeannette Kaplun

Founder of Hispana Global and member of Responsibility.org’s National Advisory Board


“School counselors are not only focused on the academic success of their students, but also on their social and emotional well-being and character growth. Ask, Listen, Learn provides comprehensive and user friendly resources and equips educators and school counselors with all of the tools they need to talk with their students about underage drinking. The positive message focusing on prevention and living a healthy lifestyle is key, and I am excited for school counselors to utilize this material.”

Jill Cook

Jill Cook

Assistant Director, American School Counselor Association (ASCA)

Making the Program

We worked with a cutting edge animation team to think about the best ways to send this important message to kids. After extensive focus groups and testing, we established characters and scenarios that delivered the science of the brain in an entertaining and educational manner, while making the alcohol figure cold, ugly, and unappealing. Here’s a look into the making of this program:


The Materials

The Materials

Supporting parent resources were developed by our National Advisory Board member, family physician, and parenting expert Dr. Deborah Gilboa.

See the Materials

Program content regarding the effects of alcohol on the developing brain was reviewed by NIAAA and is consistent with currently available science.

When first cuts of the animations were available, they were focus grouped with teachers as well as 5th and 6th grade students:


“It’s both educational and entertaining, so you’re not bored while you’re watching.”

– STUDENT

“It mapped out perfectly what’s going on in the brain much better than what they currently see in health class – the animation would really get their attention.”

– TEACHER

At the American School Counselor Association’s annual conference, we hosted a roundtable of counselors to learn more about how they could best use our resources:


“Counselors can get time in the classroom if the lesson matches standards.”

– SCHOOL COUNSELOR

“Give parents a guide to answer tough questions, like ‘What’s so great about wine anyway?’”

– SCHOOL COUNSELOR

After developing supplemental lesson plans and activities for the videos with the help of our Educational Advisory Board as well as a fifth grade teacher, we held a final focus group with 5th-7th grade health and science teachers:


“I liked it (the lesson plan). It is very detailed…just follow along and you can put your flavor in it as you go. I think it was very easy to follow.”

– TEACHER

“I think the lesson plan just in itself is a good lesson plan…even if you tweak it or whatever…I think there are a lot of collaborative activities they can do…I can do instruction, then they can break out. So it would really work. It would really work to my advantage.”

– TEACHER

If you are a teacher, visit our page for all classroom downloads and lessons!

Visit Page

If you are a parent, find all parent resources here to have conversations about alcohol at home.

Visit Page

Watch the animation series on YouTube!


Have older or younger kids?

Responsibility.org has programs to help guide a lifetime of conversations.
Visit Responsibility.org for more information.



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