Hong Kong Macao Conference Family Life Certification September 18-20, 2009 Teaching sexuality to children
KEY TO TEACHINGSEXUALITY • “The key to talking about sex is being comfortable with your own sexuality” • Alberta Mazat, Captivated by Love
TEACHING SEXUALITY • Sex is a gift from God • Sensuality vs sexuality • Myths • Sex education and sexual knowledge increases sexual activity. • Sex is nasty, dirty and to be avoided. • If you tell kids too much they just get confused & upset.
MORE MYTHS . . . • The best thing to do is just wait until they ask about sex. Then tell them. • Kids don’t want to talk to parents about sex. • Someone else will tell them. • As a parent I must know all the answers to all the questions or I cannot be an effective sexuality educator.
GENERAL PRINCIPLES 1 • Start early and work on it continuously • Care for the boy’s circumcision and girl’s genital area in a gentle and straight-forward way • Communicate that God made the whole body lovely ;be at ease with your own sexuality • Help babies to identify the different parts of the body when they start exploring their bodies ; use correct words • Don’t slap their hand and say, “Don’t touch, it’s bad.”
GENERAL PRINCIPLES 2 • Share the Responsibility • Both parents should talk to their children about sex • After a mother gives her response • she can say, “Why don’t you go talk to Daddy about this, because he can tell you how men feel. I can only tell you how women feel.”
GENERAL PRINCIPLES 3 • Answer Simply • Stop and think what the child is asking • If the child asks about babies, don’t explain about menstruation • Give a simple, direct answer • Don’t bore your child with long, boring answers; they won’t come back for more • Give an invitation for more questions; say, “Does that explain it?” “Is it okay?”
GENERAL PRINCIPLES 4 • Use teachable moments • Answer children’s questions when they are confused or shocked at something they have seen in the media, or heard at school • Talk about babies when an aunt or a friend is going to have a baby
GENERAL PRINCIPLES 5 • Counter the effect of the media • Watch TV programs with small children and point out what we think about them • If an unmarried couple is living together on television, we could point out that Jesus wants us to live happily forever in marriage
GENERAL PRINCIPLES 6 • Initiate Discussion • If your child does not ask a single question about sex, initiate the discussion • By the time the child is nine, we need say, “Honey, I’ve noticed you’ve never asked about babies or about sexual matters. Maybe we could talk about it”
Hong Kong Macao Conference Family Life Certification September 18-20, 2009 Teaching sexuality to children 2 & 3 yrs
For Children 2-3 yrs • Sex education is a long-term process • The key to teaching young children is the repetition of information until it becomes ingrained in their thinking • Treat a child’s questions about sex as casually as we do his other questions
For Children 2-3 yrs • Toddlers believe anything they are told, so it is very important to be accurate in offering sexual information • Convey concrete information by using drawings/pictures to show how God has given made us different
For Children 2-3 yrs • Introduce children to the world of plants, animals, and insects n (a pregnant pet is an excellent opportunity to explain how God created life) • Lessons should be short—no longer than 5 minutes • Use correct medical terms even though we may feel uneasy at first.
For Children 2-3 yrs • Name the sex organs accurately • Provide simple answers to questions
For Children 2-3 yrs • Sample Question: Q Where did I come from? A You grew within a small bag inside your mommy, just below her tummy. When you were big enough to be born, you came out through an opening between mother’s legs called the vagina
For Children 2-3 yrs • How did I get inside your body? A. When God created mommies and daddies, he put tiny eggs inside each of them. Daddy has what is called sperm inside his body, and mommy has tiny eggs. When the sperm from daddy meets with the egg inside mommy, a little baby grows in a bag called uterus
For Children 2-3 yrs • Why does Mommy have big breasts? • All grown-up women have large breasts. God make women this way because a mommy’s breasts will fill up with milk when she has a baby. This milk is food for the baby until it is old enough to take milk from the bottle.
Hong Kong Macao Conference Family Life Certification September 18-20, 2009 Teaching sexuality to children 4 & 5 yrs
For Children 4-5 yrs • Begin with the Creation story in Genesis. • Recount how God made Adam & Eve and told them to multiply and subdue the earth • Give a short description of sexual reproduction.
For Children 4-5 yrs • Deal gently with children when they fondle their genitals • Speak to them calmly that it is inappropriate • Don’t foster negative feelings about sex organs by telling scary stories of castration or some disaster • Firmly discourage playing “doctor and nurse” where pre-schoolers explore each other’s bodies
For Children 4-5 yrs • Explain exploring other’s bodies is inappropriate • Help children realize that our bodies are private and we are not to expose them to others or touch the private parts of another person • Teach them about good and bad touch and to tell an adult when someone gives them a “bad” touch
For Children 4-5 yrs • If children enjoy playing “dress up”, encourage girls to dress in female clothing and boys to dress in male clothing • Help children to see a clear dividing line between male and female dress and personal appearance.
For Children 4-5 yrs • During the first 5 or 6 years of life, the young child’s sexual identity will be formed. A boy needs contact with his father in order for his sexual identify to be developed properly. Boys whose fathers are absent, passive or rejecting often find it harder to identiy with the male role. Overly dominating mothers may lead a young boy to identify too strongly with his mother and reject masculinity.
Hong Kong Macao Conference Family Life Certification September 18-20, 2009 Teaching sexuality to children 6-10 yrs
For Children 6-10 yrs • The primary school child learns to reason and think things through • Displays awareness and interest in the physical differences between boys and girls by age 6 • Begins to talk about sex with friends and use sexual terms in swearing at 8 years
For Children 6-10 yrs • Engages in sex play to satisfy curiosity • Learns about masturbation and sexual intercourse from their friends by around age 10 • Has interest in conception and the process by which a baby grows inside the mother’s body
For Girls 6-10 yrs • Mothers need to explain about menstruation to daughters 9-10 years • Assure her it’s a perfectly natural occurrence • Help her understand that there is nothing “unclean” or “filthy” about her monthly cycle.
For Boys 6-10 yrs • Fathers need to explain “wet dreams” to sons at 9-10 years old • Assure him it’s a natural occurrence • Help him to learn how to deal with it when it happens especially when he is on a campout with his friends
For Children 6-10 yrs • Teach about sexual intercourse • First discuss sexual reproduction among animals • Then lead discussion of how mothers and fathers fall in love, get married and create a new life as they express their love to each other
Hong Kong Macao Conference Family Life Certification September 18-20, 2009 Teaching sexuality to children 11-13 yrs
Pre-adolescents 11-13 • “ Puberty is characterized by the maturing of the sexual organs in preparation for reproduction-- menstruation in girls and the first presence of sperm in boys – as well as secondary sex characteristics such as pubic hair, underarm hair, enlarged breasts in girls, deepened voice in boys.”
Changes in Boys • Explain significant physical and emotional changes in the body of a boy at preadolescence • The pituitary gland releases 3 key hormones, the main one being androgen which stimulates aggressiveness, ambition and drive
Changes in Boys • Androgen • Stimulates testicles to produce the testosterone hormone • Induces production of sperm cells • Growth of body hair • Induces growth of larynx resulting in a deeper voice • Stimulates a temporary enlargement of the breasts
Changes in Girls • Explain that the pituitary gland stimulates 2 primary hormones—estrogen and progesterone • Estrogen stimulates growth of the breasts, widening of the hips & maturation of the genitals • Induces menstruation and formation of a special lining called endometrium in the girl’s uterus for childbearing
Sex Awareness & Information • Teach girls about their reproductive organs and how they function • Help them understand how conception takes place • Teach them the dangers of premarital sex which may lead to pregnancy
Sexual Knowledge for Boys • Nocturnal emissions • Explain how this unique release mechanism helps with unused sperm cells • Known as “wet dreams”, it is God’s method of releasing built-up sperm cells and sexual energy in an adolescent boy or man • Reassure them it’s normal and they need not feel guilty
Facts about Masturbation • The Bible is silent on this subject • Medical doctors declare the practice harmless to health • Parents could suggest the following reasons by they feel masturbation is unacceptable for Christians.
Why Masturbation is Unacceptable • Fantasizing & lustful thinking are usually involved and the Bible condemns such thoughts (Matt 5:28) • Sexual expression was designed by God to be performed jointly by two people of the opposite sex, resulting in a necessary and healthy dependence on each other for the experience.
Why Masturbation is Unacceptable • Guilt is a universal aftermath of masturbation. Such guilt interferes with spiritual growth. • It violates 1 Cor 7:9: it is better to marry than to burn. If a young person masturbates frequently, it tends to nullify a necessary and important motivation for marriage
Why Masturbation is Unacceptable • It creates a habit before marriage that can easily be resorted to afterward as a cop-out when both partners have sexual conflicts
Conclusion • Children need to know that sex is both beautiful and broken. Because we live in a world that is both beautiful and broken, sexuality has not escaped, but we can make intelligent and informed choices that will help us, as Christians, stay in the realm of the beautiful and blessed.