Life Planning Education: A Youth Development Program Print

NOTE:  Life Planning Education (LPE) is currently being revised.  The printed/for-sale version includes older versions of some lesson plans which may be significantly different in content from the ones in the “Lesson Plans” section. Please make sure you have looked at the PDF of Life Planning Education  before purchasing - that is the version that is available to buy. The new lesson plans replace chapters 1-4 and may be downloaded for free here.

Advocates for Youth's popular family life education program, Life Planning Education: A Youth Development Program, includes chapters on sexuality, relationships, health, violence prevention, and community responsibility as well as chapters on skills-building, values, self-esteem, parenting, employment preparation, and reducing sexual risk.

Packed with interactive exercises, supplemental leaders' resources, participant handouts, and a complete guide to implementation, this resource is appropriate for use in schools and other settings for sexuality/life skills education, HIV prevention education, and pregnancy prevention. For use with youth ages 13-18. Life Planning Education is available online in PDF format. In order to download the PDF document, you need Adobe Acrobat Reader.


This publication is also available in Portuguese, Polish and Spanish:

Adolescência Administrando o Futuro (Portuguese)
Not available online. Order publication.

Cómo Planear Mi Vida (Spanish)
Download the full document or by chapter. Order publication.

Edukacja Bez Tabu
Download the full document as a PDF.

Download the Full Document (541 pp.) or by Chapter: 

Introduction, Table of Contents, and Leader's Guide to Life Planning Education

Chapter 1: Who Am I and What Can I Do?—Objectives are to: 1) become acquainted with other participants; 2) begin to feel comfortable as a member of the group; 3) become aware of one's positive qualities; 4) identify things about oneself that can be changes; and 5) identify potential work skills and strengths.

  • NOTE:  Life Planning Education (LPE) is currently being revised. The PDF available here is the old version. Please visit Revised Life Planning Education by Chapter, to download the updated lesson plans for this chapter. 

Chapter 2: What Are My Personal, Family, and Community Values?—Objectives are to: 1) understand the meaning of values; 2) identify personal, family, religious, and cultural values; 3) explore where values come from; 4) discover which values are most important personally; 5) examine the relationship between values and behavior; 6) practice communicating values to others; and 7) practice accepting the values of others.

  • NOTE:  Life Planning Education (LPE) is currently being revised. The PDF available here is the old version. Revised Life Planning Education by Chapter, to download the updated lesson plans for this chapter. 

Chapter 3: How Well Do I Communicate with Others?—Objectives are to: 1) learn what communication consists of; 2) understand how communication can affect feelings and relationships with family and friends and at school or work; 3) identify bridges and barriers to good communication; 4) practice good communication skills; and 5) define, give examples of, and practice assertive behavior.

  • NOTE:  Life Planning Education (LPE) is currently being revised. The PDF available here is the old version. Revised Life Planning Education by Chapter, to download the updated lesson plans for this chapter. 

Chapter 4: What Are My Relationships with Others Like?—Objectives are to: 1) learn which behaviors can enhance or destroy a relationship; 2) understand the nature of family relationships and what influences them; 3) identify qualities that develop and define friendship and romantic relationships; 4) explore community relationships and identify those that can serve as resources.

  • NOTE:  Life Planning Education (LPE) is currently being revised. The PDF available here is the old version. Please visit Revised Life Planning Education by Chapter, to download the updated lesson plans for this chapter. 

Chapter 5: What Is Sexuality?—Objectives are to: 1) define sexuality as more than genital sexual activity; 2) learn what human sexuality is and how it affects our behavior; 3) become more comfortable talking and asking questions about sexuality; 4) review how male and female bodies develop and change during puberty; 5) discuss how feelings and relationships change during sexual development; 6) review how human reproduction occurs; 7) review and dispel myths about sexual activity and reproduction; 8) learn how to care for sexual and reproductive organs; and 9) learn about sexual orientation.

Chapter 6: What Does Community Mean to Me? —Objectives are to: 1) define community and identify the people that make up one's community; 2) explore positive and negative elements in one's community; 3) identify the rights and responsibilities of membership in a community; 4) emphasize the importance of individual rights; 5) recognize how communities change and how people view those changes; 6) find ways to positively change one's community; and 7) learn about people in communities and their responsibilities and connections to one another.

Chapter 7: What Are My Goals?—Objectives are to: 1) learn what goals are and why goal-setting is important for life planning; 2) identify short-term and long-term goals; 3) learn and practice a process for setting goals and trying to achieve them; 4) explore personal and vocational life goals; 5) examine the importance of completing high school in life plans and goals; and 6) examine the probable impact of early parenthood on life plans and goals.

Chapter 8: How Can I Make Good Decisions?—Objectives are to: 1) identify various ways of making decisions and to examine their results; 2) learn about effective decision-making and the consequences of choices; 3) practice making difficult decisions; 4) practice predicting the consequences various decisions; 5) apply effective decision-making to sexual decisions; and 6) practice resisting pressure to change a decision.

Chapter 9: What Are Stereotypes and Gender Roles?—Objectives are to: 1) learn what stereotypes, prejudice, and discrimination mean; 2) examine stereotypes about gender and learn how stereotyping affects relationships; 3) practice critical thinking about media messages; 4) learn about, meet, and develop empathy for a variety of people; and 5) discuss personal experiences with discrimination.

Chapter 10: What Does it Take to Be a Good Parent?—Objectives are to: 1) explore personal values and attitudes about parenthood; 2) learn about the challenges teenage parents face; 3) identify the qualities and resources needed for parenthood; 4) examine the financial costs of caring for an infant; and 5) evaluate personal readiness for parenthood.

Chapter 11: Can I Keep Violence out of My Life?—Objectives are to: 1) learn when, where, and why violent acts are most likely to occur; 2) understand the relationship between anger and violence; 3) learn that angry feelings do not have to result in violent behavior; 4) identify appropriate responses to anger; 5) learn to negotiate compromise in conflict situations; 6) explore options to avoid violent or abusive situations; and 7) learn what date rape is, when it can occur, and how to prevent it.

Chapter 12: How Can I Take Care of My Health?—Objectives are to: 1) define health and all its components; 2) identify risks to personal health; 3) review the elements of a nutritious diet and healthy ways of managing weight; 4) learn accurate information about tobacco, alcohol, and other drugs and their effects on health; 5) practice decision-making and assertiveness skills as they apply to avoiding use of alcohol and other drugs; 6) understand stress and learn stress management techniques; and 7) identify the signs of depression and suicide and to practice making appropriate responses to a depressed friend.

Chapter 13: What Reduces Sexual Risks? —Objectives are to: 1) identify sexual behaviors that put one at risk for pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases, including HIV/AIDS; 2) correct misinformation about unprotected sexual intercourse and its consequences; 3) learn basic facts about STD/HIV infection; 4) identify contraceptive methods that reduce the risk of pregnancy and STD/HIV infection; 5) develop increased understanding of and compassion for people with AIDS; and 6) practice skills needed to avoid sexual risk-taking.

Chapter 14: How Do I Prepare for the World of Work? —Objectives are to: 1) explore job options; 2) examine the relationship between personal values and vocational choices; 3) examine the relationship between gender and vocational choices; 4) identify the education and training requirements for various jobs; 5) practice job-seeking skills; 6) learn how to be a good employee; and 7) understand the link between early parenthood and a vocational future.

Chapter 15: Evaluation

Chapter 16: Video Distributors

Hunter-Geboy, Carol. Life Planning Education: A Youth Development Program. Washington, DC: Advocates for Youth, 1995.

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