What is a creative plan and method for reducing STI's and STD's for young adolescents and young adults?

Expert Answers
M.P. Ossa eNotes educator| Certified Educator

If your question is regarding creative lesson plans for teaching about reducing STI's and STDs for a young adolescent student audience, you may want to refer to the study made by Douglas Kirby (2011) for the Department of Economic and Social Affairs of the United Nations Secretariat titled Sex Education: access and impact on sexual behavior of young people

Kirby performed 63 studies that assessed how sex education programs affect or impact young adolescents as far as initiation of sexual intercourse. The conclusion of the study was that at least 37 per cent of the programs helped delay initiation. Although it seems like a low percentage compared to those who did not help, there is a clear indication that conducting the programs does help. What needs to be taken into consideration is the consistency of exposure that should be had to this programs in order to create a very strong sense of responsibility on the child. This being said, the program should be:

  • available not only at school but also at home and in places where the adolescents interact.
  • creative, like your question specifies
  • consistent

Three methodologies that attract teenagers are:

  • social media and technology
  • grouping and identifying
  • symbolism
  • multi-level accomplishments
  • tangible rewards
  • concise and relevant information

The first step is to make the plan into a collective project. Something that they need to work on together in order to identify themselves and buy into the plan. By giving the project a name such as "Project Us" you can prepare your marketing and propaganda for the teens to engage actively and feel like a team that will conduct the project together. This is the grouping and identifying part. You need this particularly with young teens.

Plan a project that requires teenagers intermingling. Have them conduct interviews and surveys first where you prepare a quiz assessing how much they know about venereal diseases. Make the quiz honest and relevant even adding pictures if needed. Those who seem to have more knowledge than others get to move up " a level" within the group. Have a title for each level. It is part of the identifying portion of the project.

Once you know who are your MKO's (more knowledgeable others) let them conduct different workshops made by them. They can choose which workshop to work in to make into a presentation to others, and they can choose any of these topics.

  • Make a timeline of the effects of gonorrhea using timetoast.com (concise, relevant information)
  • Re-create a list of consequences that come as a result of syphilitic infection (how people deteriorate per stage)
  • In life-size poster of a human body, draw a monster or put stickers of ugly monsters on all the parts that are potentially deteriorated by gonorrhea.
  • Make a list of "grossness" that occurs in your body as a result of exposure to STDs (frank, respectful language but going to the point)
  • Give a face to STDs. Using computer software, create an identifier for STDs that will bring an image to your mind every time you talk about it. (symbolism, making connections)

The more workshops the students pass and attend, and the more workshops students volunteer to initiate or research, the more points they can get. These points should go towards a privilege, even a prize. Privileges are more productive than prizes with young teenagers. Time off, special seating, etc. all work well. The important thing is to involve them in the process 100%.

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