The school programme
It is for the first time that age appropriate workbooks for children (especially younger children) on gender and sexuality are available in the Indian context. The workbooks allow children to explore issues around growing up and the world around us, experiential, using minimum facilitation from teachers. Good facilitation from teachers will however, greatly enhance the use of the workbooks. Each book also includes a section on how to stay safe from abuse including child sexual abuse. The Body Literacy perspective stresses on learning to make friends with the body and the mind, places sexuality education within the body and mind, relationships and gender equality. It addresses both girls and boys. Its sole purpose is to start children on a path to access useful information and to make their own decisions.
The objectives of the workbooks are:
· To enable teachers and parents to address sexuality issues and questions of children in a non-threatening way.
· To enable children to develop a healthy concept of their own body and mind.
· To sensitize children about gender discrimination and work out possible ways to handle/scale down.
· Prepare children for changes that will/do come about in the body.
· To help children develop personal and social skills.
· To enable children to identify suitable support networks for handling issues related to themselves.