RAISING SEXUALLY HEALTHY KIDS: A (PARTIAL) MEDIA RESOURCE LIST
GENERAL SEX ED RESOURCES
FOR PARENTS and EDUCATORS
Talk to Me First. By Deborah Roffman. Roffman’s book is for anyone who wants to be an “askable parent.”
“The Talk: How Adults Can Promote Young People’s Healthy Relationships and Prevent Misogyny and Harassment.” A MUST READ report on teenagers from Making Caring Common, a project of the Harvard School of Education, with great data–and great solutions.
For parents and teachers of kids 0-12: From Diapers to Dating by Debra Haffner. Haffner is a Unitarian Universalist minister and former head of the Sexual Information and Education Council of the U.S. Her book, organized from birth through age 12, is both practical and comforting.
For parents of teens: For Goodness Sex by Al Vernacchio, who coined the pizza metaphor! Vernacchio’s book is inclusive and progressive, promoting healthy sexuality, values, and body image in young people.
10 Tips on Talking About Healthy Relationships with Teens from Futures Without Violence
Breaking Up is Hard to Do How to help your child engage in best break-up practices (Tip: don’t do it via text)
Any of the books by Robie Harris: It’s Not the Stork (ages preschool-3rd grade); It’s So Amazing (kindergarten-4th grade) and It’s Perfectly Normal (1st grade and up). Harris’ books are fabulous resources for the basics about reproduction, healthy relationships, sexuality, anatomy etc. They are the books to have on hand before your child asks, “Where did I come from?”
There’s a great new online resource called AMAZE. It takes the “awkward” out of sex ed for the puberty set. Real info in fun, animated videos that give all the answers they actually want to know about sex, your body and relationships.
What’s Happening to My Body (which has girl and the boy versions–get them both, regardless of your child’s gender!) by Lynda Madaras is an excellent resources for kids on all the changes they are going through emotionally and physically at puberty. You can get them both for your child to give him/her insight into what’s going on with the other sex–and how much is similar between them.
Dating Smarts: What Every Teen Needs To Know To Date, Relate Or Wait by Amy Lang. A primer on dating, relationships and sex, including real-world tips and support.
HIGH SCHOOL & COLLEGE
S.E.X.: The All-You-Need-To-Know Sexuality Guide to Get You Through Your Teens and Twenties by Heather Corinna. If you’re going to get your teen (male or female) one book on sex this is it. It is the Our Bodies, Ourselves for a new generation.
American Hookup by Lisa Wade. Best book ever on the hookup culture–and how it might become more benevolent.
Heather Corinna (author of S.E.X., above) is the producer of the equally excellent resource, the web site Scarleteen. Progressive, accurate and friendly sex education and information for teens and young adults!
sexetc.org, Sex education by teens, for teens. Info on birth control, condoms, HIV/AIDS & STDs, pregnancy and more. Sex, Etc. is published by Answer.
Confi Another fantastic resource!
Juicebox Sex ed. There’s an app for that.
Go Ask Alice, Alice! is not one person, but a team of Columbia University health care specialists along with a staff of researchers and writers.
Laci Green’s videos on Youtube: Green is entertaining, educational, real and wildly popular.
Emily Nagoski’s TED talk, “Unlocking the Door to Your Own Sexual Well-Being” as well as her blog, “The Dirty Normal,” and her book Come As You Are.
The Halls A video series about 3 young men and their struggles sifting through relationships, trauma, masculinity and their own identities.
This is a great clip about sexual racism: the gendered reasons that African American women and Asian men are marginalized as romantic and sexual partners.
CLOTHING & DRESS CODES:
Article: The Battle over Dress Codes
Article: Reimagining School Dress Codes
TEDx Video: An Epidemic of Beauty Sickness
Rachel Bloom: “Put Yourself First in a Sexy Way” (PG-13)
Rachel Bloom: “The Sexy Getting Ready Song” (R-rated)
Dove “Evolution” video
For Boys: “Wet Dreams and False Images” trailer
These three videos are a bit simplistic, but they get the conversation started.
7 Tips for Talking to Kids About Porn from Common Sense Media
This is a useful article from the New York Times about age-appropriate way to talk to your kids.
This Daily Show skit is raunchy and perhaps does not question actual porn as much as it might but it does point out the racism in porn, which is something that teens neither thing about nor will find acceptable. Probably older high school and/or college age
For high school kids and older: The documentary, Hot Girls Wanted is a much-needed reality check on the “amateur porn industry.”
For girls themselves, About Face, Powered By Girl and Spark Movement are great starting points. For those in the Bay Area, About-Face does magnificent workshops and programs for girls in both community groups and schools.
The trailer for the documentary Wet Dreams and False Interviews is geared towards boys and is great primer on photo-shopping and manipulation of women in media
Girls ages 12+ may enjoy my previous book, Cinderella Ate My Daughter, by Peggy Orenstein
One of my favorite books ever that takes the long view of girls and body image in America for interested adults and older teens is Joan Jacobs Brumberg’s, The Body Project.
Cartoon: “No ‘I’ in Sex” Great cartoon on masculinity and consent. Especially good for boys!
A conversation guide to talking to your child about sexual assault and consent from Confi.
Why consent is like a cup of tea?
F*ck yes (this is a somewhat racy video series, but great—for high school and college)
Article:10 Things to End Rape Culture
SEX ED CURRICULA:
Our Whole Lives from the Unitarian/Universalist church, offers curricula for ages 5-68 (and training for leaders). It is available low-cost from the church web site.
The LA Trust Workshops for LGBTQ Youth They are being left out of the conversation about loving their bodies, healthy relationships and safer, more ethical sex.
How Do You Tell if Someone Wants to Have Sex With You? This curriculum is free and includes some terrific videos.
Who Are You? A free toolkit that uses group exercises and a short film to help young people, 15+ about the prevention of sexual violence and ethical decision making.
FABULOUS SPEAKERS FOR YOUR SCHOOL OR COMMUNITY GROUP:
Charis Denison, featured in the final chapter of Girls & Sex, is a national consultant with decades of classroom experience working with teenagers. She is available to consult with schools, community groups and private individuals/groups.
Shafia Zaloom is another educator with decades of classroom experience. She currently teaches part time at Urban High School in San Francisco is particularly effective on consent curricula and porn education
Deborah Roffman is great on talking to adults about how to be an “askable parent.”
Al Vernacchio, who invented the famous pizza metaphor for sex.