Running head: SEXULA EDUCATION: LATE CHILDHOOD AGES 10-12
Sexual Education: Late Childhood Ages 10-12
Adolescence, the period between childhood and adulthood, begins after secondary sexual characteristics (e.g. pubic hair) appear and continues until sexual maturity is complete. Rapid physical changes are accompanied by important psychological changes relating particularly to the way the adolescent perceives himself or herself. This can be a turbulent time. The physical changes of puberty are triggered by hormones, chemical substances in the body that act on specific organs and tissues. Perhaps the most dramatic changes of puberty involve sexuality. Internally, through the development of primary sexual characteristics, adolescents become capable of sexual reproduction. Externally, as secondary sexual characteristics appear, girls and boys begin to look like mature women and men.
I have chosen pre-teen (ages 10-12) to discuss because this is a very influential age when talking about sex education. As children reach this age they seem to become different people. They are in a period where they are looking for answers to the changes happening to their body and mind. They no longer fall for tricks from their parents or believe tall tales as a substitute for the truth.
During this age range their physical appearances begin to change, the once little girl may begin to develop a woman’s figure and the once little boy may notice slow changes in his body. They will need reassurance during this time period. They may become self-conscious and uncomfortable, which is the most difficult time for both girls and boys to adjust to their bodies.
My main goal in talking to pre-teens is to explain that their bodies will go through a lot of change and that they are not alone in this process. I will also discuss their sexual thoughts and behavior and the consequences this may have on...