Purpose: To provide an opportunity for parents and teens to explore values around sexuality
Time: About one hour
Materials: Two copies of Talking about Sexuality and Values handout for each participant
Planning Notes: Make two copies of the Talking about Sexuality and Values handout for each participant. This activity can be used in two ways:
- As part of a sexuality education classroom experience in which teens fill out the sheet and later discuss their values in the classroom. Youth then take a worksheet home, filling it out themselves and asking a parent or guardian to fill it out and discuss it with them.
- As part of a parenting workshop, parents can fill out the forms and discuss their values in the workshop, then take another worksheet home and ask their teen to fill it out and discuss it with them.
- Introduce the topic of values. Discuss how values are the principles that we believe in and that should guide our behavior. Say that values are learned, first from parents or other caregivers and then from others, including peers. Adolescents often question or test the values they have learned from family. Friends with different values, media messages, and developing intimate relationships all challenge youth and create opportunities for them to make responsible and healthy decisions about sexuality.
- Pass out to each participant a single copy of the handout, Talking about Sexuality and Values. Ask participants to estimate the age at which they feel each listed behavior is appropriate.
- Process the activity by collecting all the handouts. Shuffle them and redistribute so no one has his/her own handout. Using a blackboard or newsprint, ask the group to call out the age listed on the sheets for each behavior. Go through all the behaviors, listing the ages beside them.
- Which behaviors were easiest to assign to a particular age? Which were hardest? Why do you think this was so?
- Could the age you chose for particular activities by affected by circumstances? Can you give an example?
- Why do you think there were such differences in the ages listed next to some behaviors?
- How did you decide the appropriate age for a given behavior?
- How would you react if your parent (or teen) listed a very different age from one you gave?
- Would gender affect the age you think appropriate for some of the behaviors?
- How would you react if your boyfriend/girlfriend felt very differently from you about appropriate ages for some of the behaviors?
- Close this activity by asking the participants to respond to the following questions:
- By doing this activity, I learned … about myself.
- This activity really made me think about …
- My values …
- Give each participant a blank copy of the handout. Ask participants to take the handout home and ask a parent/teen to fill it out and discuss it with them.
- If you have time at a later session, ask participants to share what happened when they did this activity at home with a parent/teen.
Click here for the Talking about Sexuality and Values Handout