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Pied_Pfeffer's avatar

How should sex ed be taught?

Asked by Pied_Pfeffer (28033points) August 22nd, 2015
10 responses
“Great Question” (1points)

In a perfect world, at what age should a child start this education? What would it cover? Who should teach it?

My sister is a 5th grade teacher (10–11 year olds.) Two became pregnant. One had an abortion and the other carried the child to term.

Where are we falling short of the mark?

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majorrich's avatar

If I were Shah and it had to be taught at school, I would have it taught in two stages. First would be a clinical nuts and bolts “this is the boy parts, this is the girl parts, this is how they fit together” kind of thing. Then a section on the emotional readiness and a section on the horribleness of STD’s.
Wind the whole thing off with a couple of 50–60 year olds actually having sex.
I predict teenage pregnancy would drop off significantly.

zenvelo's avatar

Sex ought to be taught from a very young age with age appropriate answers to questions. Besides the technical mechanical answers, the parent or adult needs to also speak to the appropriate context for exploring sexuality.

That includes addressing masturbation as a positive but private matter. It includes awareness of “only you or a doctor can touch you there”; and it includes things like not invading others privacy.

And as the child enters puberty, it is time to talk to them about the whole gamut of sexuality, which includes information about birth control, and that “you’ll know when you are ready to have sex when you are comfortable talking to your partner about birth control and avoiding pregnancy”. And, it includes strong communication with boys that they are fully responsible (both kids are) if a girl gets pregnant.

JLeslie's avatar

I had “sex ed” in 5th grade and it was basically about getting my period, getting bigger breasts, and watching some puppies being born. I think 5th grade is a good age to start and I would not call it sex ed. My teacher didn’t reach it, we went to a different teacher for two days of class and one if the days the boys and girls were separated.

I don’t think it should be such a big deal. There is no reason the regular teacher can’t teach it. It should be part of a science class where kids learn about basic body systems. Digestive, nervous, circulatory, etc.

It should be taught again in 7th as part of a science class in more detail. Then again in 9th or 10th and in high school as part of learning about myosis and generics. it should include birth control options and more details about pregnancy and birth. Also, information on STD’s, specific information on laws regarding HIPPA, clinics available to seek health care, and

JLeslie's avatar

Typo: meiosis and genetics, not myosis and generics.

Judi's avatar

I think that it should be taught as a child grows up by the parents, ideally, but by the school to catch those who’s parents can’t talk about the subject. I remember drawing the Bulwinkle picture (ovaries ad uterus) for all of my kids before they even started school, when the question, “where do babies come from” first came up. You answer questions honestly and give as much information as the child can handle.
By 5th grade, my oldest was asking a lot of questions, and frankly I didn’t know all the answers. I bought her a book called “What’s Happening to My Body.” She wore that thing out! By the time they started teaching sex ed in school she was correcting the teachers.
With all that information, and many of my fundamentalist friends believing I gave my kids TO MUCH information, they all waited (even my son) until they were out of High School to have sex. My oldest was in her mid 20’s. They’re all good looking kids, it wasn’t for lack of opportunity. They just had all the information they needed and waited until they thought they could handle it emotionally.

josie's avatar

What do you mean “we”?

Silence04's avatar

In a perfect world: As soon as they ask. Everything they are asking about. Anyone willing to provide the info they are asking.

fluthernutter's avatar

@wildpotato Wish the U.S. was as progressive as the Netherlands. Great link.

Kardamom's avatar

@Silence04 I was one of those shy kids who got embarrassed easily. I would never have asked.

I was grateful that my parents had books that were conveniently left around the house, and we started our formal sex ed classes in 6th grade, then had another in 8th grade which was much more specific, and even more in 10th grade. In 6th grade we learned about how our bodies worked (periods and fallopian tubes and all that stuff), but it was never mentioned how the sperm actually got inside the woman’s body to fertilize the egg to make a baby. That was revealed to us on the school yard. By 8th grade, that was all sorted out correctly. It should have been sorted out in the first class in 6th grade. No mention was made of birth control until 10th grade, but our health teacher, a very cool male teacher, showed us how to put a condom on a banana, so that we could see how it was done properly, rather than just saying, “Hey kids, use a condom!” None of my friends or I had sex while we were still in high school. I’m sure there were some kids who did, but I think it helped that we were very informed about the risks, as well as how to properly use birth control.

Back then, most girls started their periods when they were 12 or older, so it worked out reasonably well, and I’d never heard of any girl having sex ed (or health and hygiene as they called it) at that time, but this was in the mid 70’s.

I remember one girl got pregnant by her boyfriend in 9th grade and it was a huge scandal. Another girl, also in 9th grade got pregnant by one of the teachers. Yikes!

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