Tag Archives: sex ed

La la la…I can’t hear you!!!

What one word inspires instant embarrassment in Miss Drama?

Puberty.

I had her captive in the car with no one else, so I took the opportunity to ask if she had questions. She’ll be heading off to middle school this fall and this is about the time I had the talk with her brother and sister.

She got very squirmy in the back seat. “I know everything!”

Uh-huh. When I quizzed her a bit, she did indeed know the basics, but was highly relieved to discover that babies cannot spontaneously sprout from her eggs.

When I asked her if she understood what sex was, she stuck her fingers in her ears and gave me a very eloquent reply, “Lalala.” Her brother and sister squirmed too, but wanted to fact check what they knew. Miss Drama hasn’t gotten there yet.

I dropped the subject, letting her know I didn’t want to make her uncomfortable, but if she had questions, she could ask them whenever.

Fastforward a couple of days. I woke to cthulu calling from the deep through our pipes. Sewage water backed up in both bathrooms. Gross. The plumber is on his way.

I gave Miss Drama instructions not to flush or stick toilet paper in the toilet right now. Not long after she informed me she opted to pee in the litter box instead.

Better than the yard?

Oh the blackmail fodder she hands me!

Somehow, I don’t think dating and sex are going to be important topics for her for a long while yet.

 

 

 

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Fifty Shades: Parenting Edition

Miss Music, my sister, sent me a text discussing her son. He’d proactively asked for a math tutor. She was very pleased at this evidence of growing maturity. “It almost makes up for the porn I found on his phone.”

Ah the joys of parenting teens (or almost teens, as my nephew doesn’t turn 13 until April).

Her approach and mine differ somewhat. Sure, I aimed to keep all of that away from my kids for as long as possible, but once they are exposed (via friends no doubt) it’s a losing battle to attempt to ban it. Nonetheless, she brought up a salient point in our discussion. Many sites have some really sick stuff, and I don’t mean sick as in the new cool sort of way.

With that in mind, I called Mr. Smarty-Pants in to have a bit of a discussion.

“So, your cousin got in trouble for downloading porn onto his phone.”

“Downloading? Pft. I stream it.”

And that, dear internet, is my son. His cousin, not only went counter to his mother’s wishes, but hid his activities. My son, on the other hand, is perfectly chill with informing me that he streams porn. This is one of those times where I’m both horrified and proud of our communication.

Soup King and I asked him his opinion of said porn, to which he agreed it was totally not realistic, after all it’s a movie and movies fake everything (smart kid). Then we reminded him to avoid certain types as not only are they gross, but illegal. I also reiterated that people can develop addictions, to which he replied, “No problem. I won’t want that when I’m older and get a girl.”

Somehow that thought doesn’t comfort me in the least.

Behind the Curve

I’m behind the curve. I might have fallen off of it. A year ago I had innocent little children ignorant of so many things. A few random remarks by my eldest two children have made it clear that they know WAY more than I thought they did about certain subjects– and I’m not talking about mathematics.

We had the big talk about puberty and sex over the summer and they’ve asked a few questions, but there were a host of related topics not covered. I didn’t think I needed to dump it all on them at once.

I made a joke a couple of weeks back, aimed at Soup King, and Mr. Smarty-pants picked up on subtle innuendo that a few months ago would have gone right over his head. Then I noticed Miss Diva picking up on stuff.

No doubt he’s sharing his new found knowledge with Miss Diva. I can’t really be mad about that. I did the same thing. At least he isn’t enlightening Miss Drama. At least, I don’t think he is.

I suddenly have the urge to give Miss Drama a pop quiz.

When he sees that I’m shocked that he knows something, he laughs and says, “Mom, I go to Ridgeway.”

Come to think of it, maybe I should give Mr. Smarty-Pants a pop quiz too. Heck while we’re at it, they can all take a quiz.

How do I know what type of corrupted information has been passed their way without a quiz?

Ugh, so why is it I feel like my knowledge is about to be tested?

That Parent

After confirming details and facts with Mr. Smarty pants about the project I found grossly inappropriate for math class, not only was the slang (and I use that word generously) term used, it was the title of the poster. This poster is hanging up in his classroom.

So here are my choices:

  1. Drop the subject. My child is well informed and my place on the scientific knowledge pedestal is solid at least until he asks me to work a physical chemistry problem.
  2. Be THAT parent. You know the one. The one that puts up a fuss and causes a ruckus.  I know that teaching facts seems far fetched, but call me a cock-eyed optimist.

I’m leaning toward choice two. When eighty percent of Memphis City Schools pass in stead of fail, then they can experiment with teaching techniques. They can’t get one subject right at a time, I’m not letting them screw up two at a time.

50 Shades of Math

I’m an advocate for teaching children in a manner that makes the material relevant to every day life. I remember thinking in geometry class, when am I ever going to use proofs? I might not be cranking out proofs, but it did help me to learn step-by-step logical analysis. Still, the most contextual math class I ever had was perhaps statistics, and even that is reaching. Math was math. I think there are some subjects that require far more background  before they can be used in a math class. It’s one thing to use real world examples and a whole other thing to try and teach two difficult subjects at the same time.

School was in session for just over a week before Mr. Smarty-Pants came home and asked me something that made me go, “HUH?”

They were learning ratios. In my opinion, this is not a difficult topic and I can think of multiple everyday examples without bringing up topics better fit for a science or health class. (Filling a weed eater with 32:1 gas:oil, altering a baking recipe, allocating money, to name a few.)

The teacher chose to use “teen life” issues as topics. These topics ranged from infant mortality, HIV, violent crimes, to this questionable topic.

First of all, in order to properly discuss STDs, one must teach sex-ed. Before teaching sex-ed, one must teach basic biology. They’ve yet to fully cover things like viruses, bacteria, and how the immune system and reproductive system work. Otherwise, a lot of information is tossed at kids and they comprehend only a tiny amount, and probably misconstrue even more. So even if the teacher has taught science, as this one claims to have done, she hasn’t taught it to these kids.

Even if Mr. Smarty-pants simply heard someone refer to the aforementioned questionable topic and it was not used in the class, I still do not feel the lesson was well planned. I taught him the concept of ratios in under a minute and he did not have lingering questions. The Pandora’s box of sex-ed takes weeks of teaching to cover everything. The teacher claims that no pornography (some of the unfiltered search results link to porn) or derogatory terms were used. Seeing as how she didn’t state outright that “bleepity-bleep” was not a topic, I beg to differ.

It isn’t real. It isn’t a scientific or medical term. Misinformation was taught. Yes, HIV involves a weakened immune system, but the other STD’s which she didn’t even touch upon, do not. So, her argument there was vague at best. She said there were pictures of “it” on an individual’s face. The pictures were either photoshopped or an individual with full blown AIDS suffering from an opportunistic infection. If they kids misunderstood what it was they were researching, it proves my my point that it was too much information for a simple math in class project.

She seemed to miss the point I was making. I never accused her of using pornography or teaching something which vilified female sexuality. I did point out that without properly explaining all of the information attached to that lesson, were a child to go home and Google these terms he or she would run across all of that and more.

Yes, I argued that this should be taught in a science and/or health class. She argued that she was “qualified to do her job” as she had a B.S. in Science and a master’s in education. I’m glad she is well qualified, but that wasn’t the point. She was on the defensive from the moment she made the call.  Sure, she can teach science, but it wasn’t science class. It was math class. Sometimes trying to “multitask” isn’t a good idea.

I liken it to teaching angles by having hormone addled kids play co-ed twister. Yeah, because they are so going to remember the math….not.

Where did the time go?

Last week I was driving home, and as usual, had the radio playing. It was a bit later than usual, as I had karate class that night. Unfortunately I did not turn the sound down quickly enough when the DJ began chatting about that night’s discussion: “How to talk to your child about losing their virginity.”

My youngest was beginning to nod off, so not really paying any attention. Yay! The other two? Not so much. Mr. Smarty-pants and I already had a very general version of The Talk. Miss Diva on the other hand was blissfully unaware of anything beyond the fact that it takes a mom and a dad to make a baby. She’d yet to ask about the mechanics. So, thanks to the DJ I got another awkward in the car grilling.

“Mom, what does that mean?”

I’m all about being honest and upfront, but my six year old, who can barely remember that wearing clothes are a requirement for leaving the house and walls are not to be drawn on, did not need to be privy to The Talk. I could only imagine her creative interpretation, which she would no doubt share with half the class, possibly resulting in ME getting called to the principal’s office.

So what did I do?

STALL!

“We’ll talk about it when we get home, okay?”

“Why not now?”

I motioned her forward. She leaned in between the seats. “Your sister is too young to hear.”

“Oh!” She sat back with a smug, I’m sooooo much more older and smarter than my sister, look on her face, and of course cornered me the moment we got home. I did not, however, expect her brother to join in.

“You already know this, right?” I ask. Had he forgotten?

“Yeah, and we had sex ed in science class last year. We learned all about sexual reproduction.” Rather than appearing confident, other than the fact he could use that term and know what it meant, he exuded the air of someone bursting with questions, but too embarrassed to ask them.

I hope I didn’t look as shocked as I felt. Really? They teach sex ed in fourth grade and don’t even send a note home to parents. Instead of saying what was in my head, namely “WTF?”, I nodded and asked, “So, do you have any questions?”

“A ton.”

Crap.

Did I mention that it was ten o’clock, past their bedtime and I was not prepared for a co-ed session?

I gave the same little succinct explanation I had given Miss Diva’s brother a couple of years ago, sticking to the biological facts in the broadest sense.

“I don’t get it.”

Mr. Smarty-pants’ condescending commentary on her intelligence did not help. Then he pipes up, “So when can all of this happen?”

WAY TOO SOON! I look at him, still so much a child, and yet he’s as tall as my shoulder, can pick me up off the ground, and just a couple of years away from a deepening voice and stinky armpits. What happened to the tiny newborn that snoozed through my calculus III class; the infant that banged on the keyboard while I attempted to type my senior research presentation; the toddler that dumped an entire jar of flour on the carpet because his hot-wheels needed snow?

About the time you hit puberty.”

I have to admit I breathed a sigh of relief to see he disliked that answer as much as I did. Their little sister barged into the room, so I postponed Little Miss Diva’s talk, as bedtime took precedence. I suspect Mr. Smarty-Pants still has many other questions still needing answers. He’s a smart kid, and despite the fact it will be awkward, I can field his questions. I feel like I need to put together a Power Point presentation for Little Miss Diva. 😀 It seems she is more of a visual learner, as I am. I totally didn’t get it until I saw a drawing in a medical book. “That’s what Mama was talking about!” Seeing as how Power Point puts me to sleep, and would likely do the same to her, I told her I’d find a book to help explain things to her.

So, before I get cornered in the car again without a handy presentation ready, any suggestions?