My 10-year-old, fourth grade son brought home a note from school informing us that Friday the class will have instruction in “Growth and Development” in part to help the children “develop positive, confident and healthy attitudes toward growing up.” The note goes on to explain that “Accurate knowledge about their bodies creates a normal attitude and perspective toward themselves.” Great, normalcy! But wait, the note also points out that boys and girls will meet in separate session, with the boys meeting with the only male teacher at the school, and the girls meeting with the school nurse. She’s female, by the way.
I don’t recall having this kind of health class, really, until 7th or 8th grade. I think we might’ve touched on the subject briefly in maybe 6th grade, but it was our middle school exposure to sex ed that still has me chuckling. My health class was taught by the basketball/baseball coach, so he was a basketball/baseball coach/health teacher. Ah, the good ol’ days! I’ll never forget how we came to class one day to find all the notes already written on the board, and he instructed us to write down the notes — no talking, mind you — and study those for the test. He even left the room. The poor guy must not have wanted anyone to ask any questions. We took notes and had a test over it later in the week. End of “discussion,” if you can call it that. Not that I would’ve asked questions anyway, but it seems funny now the lengths this teacher went to avoid the topic.
I’m curious to see how much my son will tell me about this class. Will he say much or will it seem inappropriate, since only males will be present. I can understand not wanting to embarrass anyone, but I’m wondering if the boys will get any information about girls’ development and vice versa. Or is that something for later on?
There’s also a place on the note where I can sign, if I want, and have my child excused from the “Growth & Development activity.” All this is making me giggle. The secrecy is making me revert to immaturity. I’ll let him participate; then I’ll ask him what they said. Will the video they show be cheesy? Will Ben Stein narrate? Will the boys laugh? Will the girls? Will they all be scarred for life? Will they blog about it 30 years from now? Does anyone else remember sex ed? Anyone, anyone?