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Sex needs a new metaphor......

  • Sally Ann
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12 Jan 2018 15:15 - 12 Jan 2018 15:27 #1 by Sally Ann
Sex needs a new metaphor...... was created by Sally Ann
I've shared this TED talk a number of times when discussing the definition of consent and respect- this often comes up during Day 2 Foundation Training in Protective Behaviours when talking about safer relationships and how we can start to teach and role-model these from birth. (When I trained to deliver Baby Massage we were taught the importance of asking a baby if they'd like a massage and the need to listen to their response in terms of body language etc. An adult might protectively interrupt on behalf of the baby if they thought the massage might help with tummy pain, but they would definitely explain to the baby why they were doing what they were doing).

Al Vernacchio's idea of comparing talking about sex with discussing sharing a pizza does, I believe, enable a potentially mutually satisfying experience for all involved!
Last edit: 12 Jan 2018 15:27 by Sally Ann.

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31 Jan 2018 10:18 #2 by Inspired
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Thanks for posting this Sally-Ann – I think it’s a great TED talk and it inspired me to buy Al Vernacchio’s book “for goodness sex – Changing the Way We Talk to Teens About Sexuality, Values and Health”.

Al Vernacchio is a sexuality educator and English teacher in a Quaker school in Pennsylvania. He runs a year long class “Sexuality and Society” for his 12th graders (6th form) along with a “Human Sexuality” class for his 9th graders (Year 10). His starting premise is that all humans are sexual beings from the moment we are born until the moment we die. However, whether or not we are sexually active, with whom, when and how is a personal choice. So through both classes he is striving to help his students see themselves accurately – “as sexual beings who have values and choices to make, as authentic individuals with a set of likes and dislikes, as real people who aren’t supposed to look like models on billboards or porn movie stars”. And he is challenging his students to “think about sexuality as a philosophy, not an act… to recognise that sexuality is the way our gender and sexual orientation influence how we act in the world and the way the world reacts to us”.

One of the things that stands out for me is Al’s focus on exploring which values underpin our sexuality and identity and therefore our relationships too. A core value, in both his classes and his life, is that sexuality education is a form of social justice education, so he working to help his students recognise and combat prejudice and discrimination based on any aspect of sexuality, including sexual orientation.

Whether you are a parent or working with young people this book offers a really practical and valuable approach for helping all of us make sense of the confusing cultural and social landscape we live in; and helping us navigate the mass of unwritten rules about sex, sexuality, gender & identity.

I found this book both inspiring and educational - personally and professionally - and I highly recommend it.

For anyone who would like to hear more from Al Vernacchio here is link to his "speaker" webpage where you can find all his talks: alvernacchio.com/speaker/

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05 Feb 2018 09:05 #3 by Sally Ann
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Thanks for the recommendation Lucy - just purchased and will also add review once received and read. B)

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