Sex doesn’t change

Sex doesn’t change; it is the attitude of young people to sex that changes and that’s the problem

In debating sex and sexuality there are two issues: context and expectation.

Nudity and sex have different meanings in different contexts and as expectation changes following the growth of unbridled pornography available to anyone who seeks it on the internet.

So we may ask, in this era of dramatic change, amidst a million contexts and varying expectations, what determines the appropriateness or otherwise of any picture or behaviour? What makes some contexts more or less appropriate than others?

Considering this topic helps to lead us towards the most effective ways of dealing with sex education – for it suggests that by focussing on a very specific topic or issue it is possible to lead into much more productive and insightful discussion and reflection than through the use of less focussed activity.

Thus in the chapter “Nudity and the Media” in the copiable volume “Sex and Sensibility”, the sex and relationships course for secondary schools, we consider the issue of the cover of a parenting magazine which showed a mother breast feeding a child – a picture which itself brought outrage and opprobrium. Context and expectation appears to be everything.

This is one of 60 such topics gathered together in 12 modules, ranging from the opening section on “Being human” through to modules on “The Right Pace”, “Peer Pressure”, “Sexual Orientation”, “Sex and Language” and “Sex in the Media”.

Each topic contains a whole series of activities for the students to participate in, which can be used as either whole class or small group discussion topics, as research topics and for written assignments.

Each area within the volume is itself used to explore wider connotations – and thus includes such areas as following fashion, one’s own look, influences, being oneself, how we see ourselves and so forth.

There are around 100 pages of activities and materials for the students, as well as over 20 pages of teaching notes and further information.

Sample pages can be viewed at

Publisher’s reference: T1760EMN ISBN: 978 1 86083 754 8


Photocopiable report: £24.95 plus £3.95 delivery
CD with school-wide rights: £24.95 plus £3.95 delivery
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