Parents: Lets talk about sex (Grade K-1)
Goals in talking about these subjects with your young children
- Support their sense of self and self-esteem
- Foster comfort with open communication
- Strengthen the communication with you and your child.
Remember, the important thing isn’t necessarily what you say but how you say it. The way you act and react about these subjects will affect your child’s developing feelings and opinions about these things and about themselves that can last a life time.
- accurate basis of knowledge about the body parts and their functions
- becoming comfortable with these terms and body parts
- and learning the names of the genitals
show them a picture or diagram of a body, a doll, or use themselves as a model. Have them go down the body and name every part they can think of. Correct them and add parts when needed. Ask them about what’s inside their bodies.Make a list of parts of the body with your child.In one column, list the part your child names and in the other column write what function that part has. Use every opportunity in your child’s daily routine- taking a bath, getting dressed, eating- to talk about their body parts and their functions.GenderObjectives:
- Basic knowledge of gender, designated sex, gender roles, and gender stereotypes
To explain gender to young children I created the felt person activity. Have a bunch of felt things like sports, dolls, the color blue or pink, or other things that our society genders and put it in felt boxes. Then have a third box where you put in bits and pieces from both boxes. You focus on the fact that things and actions don’t have gender. Then you can talk about “what makes a boy” and “what makes a girl” and bounce off of that to talk about trans people and intersex people. To continue with that we could have them create people with different genitals/bodies and have them dress them certain ways and give them a box with certain things and then give them a label and show that any body with any clothing and any box can have any gender.
Healthy Bodies, Safe Bodies
- accurate terms for genitals
- understanding body change
- hygiene and health
- identify 3 adults you can trust
Talk about what ways you have to take care of your body. Talk about how part of that is having good touch. What touch feels good? Cuddles, hugs, high fives, etc. What touch feels bad? Stubbing a toe, getting hit?Children need to know how to react to a dangerous situation, you can teach them about the No Go Tell Rules.NO! Say no to the person. No, don’t touch me. No!GO! Run away. Leave. Go.TELL! Go tell someone you trust, and name the people they can trust (at least 3).Practice these rules until you are sure your child knows what to do. Impart the importance of no. If you’re wrestling or tickling and they say no, stop. Tell them that if a friend says no they have to stop immediately. It’s important to always treat a no as serious and to always respect the no.FamiliesObjectives
- importance of family
- validate their family
- expand view of what makes a family
- create an inclusive definition of family
Talk about different types of families, then draw a picture of your own. Look through family pictures
Families and FeelingsGoals:
- validate family configuration
- discuss importance of family
- offer insight into feelings about family and family changes
talk about different changes a family can go through and talk about the emotions that can come with it.
Babies and Families
- knowledge of birth process and new life to family
- importance of families providing nurturance
- sexual reproduction/childbirth info
- understand adoption
Discuss the reasons why babies need families and caregivers. Discuss the different ways a baby can enter a family. Look at baby pictures
Birth of a Baby
- Understanding conception
- answer any questions children have
explain how a pregnancy happens
- love and joy children bring to families
- how humans express joy
- examples of celebrations
discuss different celebrations families have. Talk about family rituals you may have.
Use any and all opportunities to discuss sexuality and to share your beliefs and values with your children in nonthreatening ways
Whenever a sexual issue is discussed in media, ask your children for their opinion.
Car trips, family outings, and other quiet times often present good opportunities to discuss sensitive issues
Try not to pass judgement on your children’s taste, for example, in music or fashions. Instead, ask them to share why they find the music or fashions appealing. They are appropriate times for parents to be taught by their children. Teachable moments can go both ways.
books can help with this process a lot. Check out my Review List for personal suggestions. Many libraries have a parenting section that includes age appropriate picture books on these subjects.
Parents, what other activities you can think of for these subjects to obtain these objectives?