We want to bring this program into YOUR school!
Scroll down to find out what our program looks like in a classroom, all about our in-school performances, why NOW is the time to take advantage of our new approach, and the tie-ins to curriculum principles and expectations. Need more information? We'd be happy to talk with you personally, feel free to contact us!
Bring us in to lead your students in a comprehensive educational workshop!
Students are facilitated by Shira Taylor, doctoral candidate in public health, educator, and the creator of SExT. Shira leads a series of workshops where students learn in a safe and interactive environment about a diverse selection of core sexual education tenets. We recognize that sexual health education is more than simply teaching young people about the anatomy and physiology of reproduction: it includes sexual development, reproductive health, choice and sexual readiness, consent, abstinence and protection, interpersonal relationships, sexual orientation, gender identity and gender expression, affection and pleasure, body image, and gender roles and expectations.
Students then put their learning centre-stage, by creating, improvising, and discussing material created by them! Learning is ongoing; as students have a chance to engage with the material creatively it opens up new avenues of questioning and realization. This hard work culminates in a performance which can include, but is not limited to, spoken word, sketches, dance, poetry, and song. Students then share their work- and pass on their learning- with a selection their peers, or the rest of the school as a whole.
Bring us in to perform for your students!
Our unique methodology of peer-education gets students engaged, invested, and having fun! No more awkward, dated, classroom videos. No more teachers forced to disseminate material which they may feel uncomfortable with. Let these "SExT-perts" present to their peers in a live show which can be anywhere from 30 to 90 minutes in length, and tailored with appropriate, curriculum-based, material of your choosing. Watch our short clip below where our peer educators tell you, in their own words, why it's so effective for TEENS to give "the talk".
The release of 2015 Ontario Health and Physical Education curriculum finally answers the call for comprehensive sex education that moves beyond the biology of sex to arm youth with the information, understanding, and skills to help them navigate the myths, uncertainties, and anxieties that accompany early experiences with physical and emotional relationships and act as barriers to health. This is the first curriculum update since 1998 and newly covers consent, limit setting, bullying, sexting, harassment, relationships, LGBTQ identities, etc. While the new curriculum provides students with access to empowering and inclusive sex education, it is also accompanied by a great deal of controversy and resistance from certain groups. We hope to help equip teachers with more tools to engage with students on these subjects in evidence-based, arts-infused, and culturally sensitive ways. The new curriculum provides an unprecedented opportunity to explore the power of theatre in the health classroom and blaze new trails in Ontario, perhaps setting an example for Canada and beyond.
Curriculum Principles and Expectations Reflected in this Program
· The program will recognize the complexity of human development and the holistic nature of health – the cognitive, emotional, physical, and social domains –and appreciation that these are interrelated and interdependent, and all are subject to the influence of a person’s environment or context.
· The program will be highly relevant to students’ present and future lives in a complex, global, technology-rich, and rapidly changing world
· It is understood that some topics need to be approached with additional sensitivity, care, and awareness because of their personal nature and their connection to family values, religious beliefs, or other social or cultural norms
· Learning will be developmentally appropriate and respect students’ diverse backgrounds to ensure personal relevance and sensitivity
· Ground rules will be set to establish and maintain a physically and emotionally safe learning environment that is healthy, caring, respectful, accepting, and inclusive, in which students of all backgrounds, abilities, and experiences feel comfortable and welcome.
· The importance of establishing comfort level for both teachers and learners so that topics can be discussed is recognized
· Instructional approaches are informed by current research
· Teaching is constructivist, with teacher in the role of co-learner and facilitator
· Teachers should reflect on their own attitudes, biases, and values with respect to the topics they are teaching and seek out current resources, mentors, professional development, and training opportunities, as necessary.
· Community organizations can provide valuable support and enrichment for student learning, including expertise, skills, materials, and programs that are not available through the school or that supplement those that are. Partnerships with such organizations benefit not only the students but also the life of the community.
· The program will be balanced, providing for both direct instruction in content and skills and opportunities for participatory experiential learning, where students can use their knowledge and skills in structured as well as unstructured activities, encouraging creativity, self-expression, and development of personal and interpersonal skills
· Small-group activities will be used often, to allow for maximum participation
· Role playing and other theatre techniques will be used to create meaning through stories and help in the development of both physical and oral communication skills
· Instruction should motivate students and instil positive habits of mind, such as curiosity and open-mindedness; a willingness to think, question, challenge, and be challenged; and an awareness of the value of listening or reading closely and communicating clearly.
· Students will be equipped with the knowledge and skills needed to make sound decisions about matters affecting their health and well-being, as well as the comprehension, capacity, and commitment needed before they experience real-life situations in which decisions have to be made
· Students will be guided in developing a positive sense of self and identity, self-awareness, and personal coping and management skills
· The program will encourage informed personal choices and taking responsibility (within the extent possible) for one’s health
· Students will be encouraged to make connections beyond themselves to understand how their health is connected others and affected by factors in the world around them
· Students will learn how to establish, monitor, and maintain healthy relationships and have opportunities to practice communication techniques
· The focus is not merely on health knowledge but rather on higher-level thinking connected to the application of skills for healthy living
· Students will develop critical thinking and inquiry skills for complex and multifaceted issues, which include questioning, predicting, analysing, synthesizing, examining opinions, identifying values and issues, detecting bias, and distinguishing between alternatives to make a judgement, and/or guide decision making
· Opportunities will be provided for imaginative and critical thinking about issues of fairness, equity, and social justice
· Well-being is conceived as not only the absence of problems and risks, but as the presence of factors that contribute to healthy growth and development.
· Students will learn how to limit risk and to build protective factors that will increase their resilience as they confront challenges
· Facilitators will prompt students, through questioning, to reflect and monitor their thinking and learning, thus modelling this style of inquiry for their students