10 strategies to remember when the work piles up

I was talking with a colleague yesterday who was pretty overwhelmed with work. There was more training to write than she could possibly write before the training happened. This happens to all of us at one time or another, and as I have a few deadlines I’m working on myself, I thought it might be… Read more »

In what ways is a period NOT like a flower?

We’re back to 500 Lessons in 500 Days again! This week I’m focusing on lesson plans from Changes, Changes, Changes, the CSE’s manual on puberty education. In classrooms with post-pubescent students, condom usage is a common topic of conversation. Pre-pubescent (or newly-pubescent) students need similar kinds of information and hands-on experience with body care products…. Read more »

Family worries

I had a parent ask me last week how I would approach a new sexual partner. She was getting at her concern for her daughter, who is single and sexually active, and whether her daughter would actually be able to ask about her partner’s STI status – or whether any sex at all was just… Read more »

Safer sex is all well and good when it happens to someone else

Yep, that is the approach that most people take. Safer sex adds teeny tiny additional points to talk about and consider to a sexual connection. We have come, in the US, to see sex as something that we deserve to have hassle- and worry-free. I’m sure that it’s all the media stories – movies, music, TV, even advertisements!… Read more »

The ABCs of HPV

There are two sexually transmitted infections that I find students are the most routinely confused about in class: HPV and Herpes. (It doesn’t help that Herpes is referred to medically as the Herpes Simplex Virus, or HSV.) Today I want to talk about HPV: There are so many strains, they do such apparently different things… Read more »

That thing…you know, THAT one!

Yesterday’s lesson was an STI game…bingo…or shall I say BINGO!! (Sing it with me now…B…I…N…G…O…and Bingo was his name-o!) Today’s lesson from Teaching Safer Sex is somewhat more staid, but no less important or impactful. Understanding STIs is apparently simple, and yet rampant misinformation plagues the popular conversation. From believing that anal sex carries little… Read more »

I win!

I’ll admit it, I’m a sucker for games. I’m blowing through the lessons in Game On! faster than any other manual, and I’ve decided I have to pace myself a little tiny bit. But…this game is from Teaching Safer Sex! So I’ve decided it doesn’t really count, even though it’s also included in Game On! … Read more »

Lots of love

Someone recently mentioned an activity in Teaching Safer Sex to me that I hadn’t even heard of! Which means, clearly, I haven’t written about enough lessons from this awesome two-volume manual yet. So I’m going to dive deep this week, and maybe next, and maybe even the one after that if I get on a… Read more »

That thing…you know, THAT one!

We started off the week with two lessons on anatomy, so why not wrap it up with two Changes, Changes, Changes lessons on vocabulary? I love the alphabet game from yesterday, which you might have been able to tell. This lesson continues the word play by focusing in on the ways that we distract from… Read more »

Speaking about anatomy… hats…

Yesterday’s post was about anatomy – the kind with penises and testicles and ejaculation. So today’s lesson from Changes, Changes, Changes is about another kind of reproductive anatomy: the kind with ovaries and a uterus. This particular lesson just cracks me up. I haven’t actually run through it with a group of middle school students,… Read more »

Crocodile dung

I love history, the kind of history that offers meaningful, engaging, contextualizing information about something relevant to my current life and culture. I hate the kind of history that has devolved into a list of facts and names that I can’t connect to. I’m glad that there are people out there who enjoy that kind… Read more »

Talking across a divide

Young people are often more able to talk about safe sex and sexual decisions with their friends than they are their partners. This makes sense for a lot of reasons. Friend groupings tend to segregate by sex from middle through late childhood, as conversations about sex and sexuality start to become more frequent within friend… Read more »

The things I know

My friends and family are trivia geeks of all flavors. From Star Trek to baseball, they do love the details. Trivial Pursuit was one of the most often games played in my house when I was young. I’ll admit to being a sex trivia geek. So a game called Sex Ed Trivia? Sign me up!… Read more »

The geeky kind of fun I love

Last weekend I was at a huge swing-dance-camping-party that I help host every year, and fell into a conversation with a young woman who wants to get pregnant sometime in the next year. She and her partner are starting small, with education and prenatal vitamins and will get more serious about conception in a few… Read more »

When privacy is a problem

Continuing with our Game On! week, today I’m talking about the fifth game in the manual: Private One: The What, Where, and How of Privacy. Privacy is such an important issue for all people. Learning the art of disclosure is often a life-long process. There are so many ways to go with this topic, I… Read more »

It does indeed take a village

Moving away from Sex Ed in the Digital Age, but staying with our week’s theme on how to encourage intergenerational conversations about sexuality education, we are picking up a lesson from Teaching Safer Sex. Regardless of the age of the participants in this lesson plan, they get to have a really good conversation about responsibility…. Read more »

From Introduction to Depth

Following up on yesterday’s post on parenting in the digital age, today’s lesson plan also comes from Sex Ed in the Digital Age. It takes yesterday’s topic and builds on it, engaging parents (and professionals) on a deeper level of analysis of adolescent developmental needs. I love this focus on adolescent needs and how, when,… Read more »

Crossing that great divide

The last lesson for this week focused on parents and other adults comes from Making Sense of Abstinence. I was pretty sure I had already written about this lesson plan, but I can’t find the blog post, so I guess not! It aims to support youth in beginning (or continuing, I suppose) an intergenerational conversation… Read more »

Back in the game, part II

Yesterday I wrote about women’s second sexual wind in mid and later life, and today the focus is on men. The assumptions that exist in our popular culture about male sexuality during the aging process is not a particularly rosy picture. Popular opinion seems to hold that good sex for men requires a strong, firm,… Read more »

Who’s laughing?

I love it that the second lesson plan in Older, Wiser, Sexually Smarter is all about sexual humor. Humans turn to humor so often when we feel unsettled, uncomfortable, or unsure about how we should be approaching something. And so our extravagant repertoire of sexual jokes has no shortage of jokes about sexuality and aging…. Read more »