Great Relationships and Sex Education


Subtitled ‘200+ Activities for Educators Working with Young People’, this book is co-authored by Alice Hoyle and Ester McGeeney.

It is commended in Tes as “destined to become a book on every PSHE teacher’s shelf” and is sold by the Family Planning Association.

Alice Hoyle is on the board of the Sex Education Forum and Ester McGeeney is a sexual health advisor to Brook. Both organisations have received government funding.

Ode to the Clitoris

In an activity for 13 year olds (p. 169), the book recommends writing “an Ode to the Clitoris using the example from Refinery29″. The Refinery29 video shows suggestive and explicit sexual behaviour in the presence of a crucifix.

Good sex, bad sex, depends

In an activity for ages 15+ (p. 214), students are given prompt cards and asked “to place each card on the continuum depending on whether they think it is good sex, bad sex or depends.”

The teacher is advised:

Try not to give your own opinion about what is ‘good’ or ‘bad’ sex.

The prompt cards from Brook Learn include:

Anal sex
Underage sex
Oral sex
Group sex
Using sex toys
BDSM sex (Bondage & Discipline Sadomasochism)

(Emphases added)

Regarding discussing the “Feelings” prompt cards (p. 215), the book states:

Here you can emphasise that love and affection are often important parts of good sex, but not always. For others good sex is quick, rough and anonymous. You can also explore the fact that some people enjoy feeling pain during sex, which is often referred to as kink or BDSM.

(Emphases added)

The charmed circle

In an activity for ages 14+ (pp. 215-216), students are shown anthropologist Gayle Rubin’s ‘Charmed Circle’ picturing “the hierarchical system of sexual values in 1980s western culture”. The book states: “Rubin was critical of this hierarchy and argued for greater acceptance and celebration of sexual diversity and variation.”

Under “outer limits”, the chart lists types of sex such as:

Alone or in groups
In public
With manufactured objects

(Emphases added)

A suggested discussion question includes:

Are there any behaviours that are in the outer circle in the 1980s that you think are no longer taboo and should be placed in the inner circle today?

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