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» Scarleteen Boards: 2000 - 2014 (Archive) » SCARLETEEN CENTRAL » Sexual Ethics and Politics » sex ed for poor kids

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Author Topic: sex ed for poor kids
Nailo
Activist
Member # 26390

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I just came back from teaching music to the kids in the slums. It was great (though all the boys got sent home by the coordinator because they were misbehaving) and the girls actually seemed to have a good time. Thing is, when we were waiting for the bus to take the girls back to the slum's main street, the smallest girl (six years old) asked me "do you know what sex is?" and I said yes. And then she asked me "how is it?!" I very calmly said I didn't know (a bit of a lie really), because I don't want them to get home and tell their mothers "our 16 year old teacher has been having sex!!". Probably wouldn't go down well in that community.

Thing is, I'm half tempted that if she or the other girls (6-10 years old) ask me that again, I'd like to tell them something about it. Is this too young of an age to be giving them sex ed? Maybe just tell them about how babies are made? Then there's the cultural issues. I would be teaching very young christian girls about a tabboo topic. I'm worried that their mothers will have something to say about it (though I could probably explain to them why I think it's right that they know these things). But I still think it's important they learn, because otherwise they risk a LOT! Especially because of their socio-economic level.

The coordinator says she doesn't want to offer sex ed talks for the community because she thinks no one would go, so she preffers that if someone asks her for condoms, she gives them to the person under the condition they talk about sex for an hour to clear up doubts. I don't know...what do you think I should do if the girls bring up the subject again?

Posts: 410 | From: Dallas, TX | Registered: Dec 2005  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Heather
Executive Director & Founder
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I think answering questions is always okay, you'll just want to guage how you answer them based on:
- the age and personality of the student asking, and
- what your role is with them.

For instance, from what you've posted here, I would say that an answer to that question like, "Well, everyone has different experiences with sex, so it really depends on the given person you ask," would be okay. If she pressed and asked how it was for YOU, I think the best answer would be that it's just not appropriate for a teacher to discuss his or her particular sex life with students.

(Heck, even given what *I* do, and in a venue expressly for this, that's almost always a sane boundary. Despite all the sex ed I've given in more than one venue, in general, people know very little about my personal sex life when it all comes down to it.)

I think per other discussion, you'd want to check with the policies of where you're teaching, and ask what is and isn't okay. if she says it is okay, given this isn't your subject to be teaching per your job, I think that it'd be wisest not to lecture or offer up the info, but rather, to respond only when asked. So, if it was okay for you to do so per the program, and someone asked how babies were made, answer as best you can based on the age group you have and what you think they'll understand, and as non-salaciously as possible.

--------------------
Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

Posts: 68290 | From: An island near Seattle | Registered: May 2000  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Nailo
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I forgot to mention that another little girl was saying something to the effect of being gay is gross, and I said "you know, being gay really isn't anything bad" and she just shuddered. I think this one was 8 years old. Advice on this one?

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"Love does not make itself in the desire for copulation, but in the desire for shared sleep." - The Unbearable Lightness of Being, Milan Kundera

Posts: 410 | From: Dallas, TX | Registered: Dec 2005  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Heather
Executive Director & Founder
Member # 3

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Well, you can certainly ask, I'd think, WHY she feels it is gross, and then help her examine those biases pretty objectively.

--------------------
Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

Posts: 68290 | From: An island near Seattle | Registered: May 2000  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
   

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