"Rebuilding Children's Lives: A Blueprint for Treatment Foster Parents" is a wonderful example of a paper on child development. Children as early as 3 years old may ask parents questions about how babies are born and the term for a certain sexual part. Learning sexuality is an important part of the growth and development of children and parents are often confused as to how much information would be appropriate for the children. In 1996, Baker, Herron & Mott stated that the amount of sexual information a parent could give to children should match their age and stage of development (p.
173). Parents must engage in open communication with children, allowing them to express freely sexual matters and curiosity. Children should also be taught of sexual parts and function at the right time or age, using the right words for sexual parts. Children are being taught sexual parts and functions through the use of biological language. However, the use of common words according to what a child can understand might be necessary and parents are responsible for associating these common words to biological language because these words are what children will be using in school or outside of the home environment.
A child may perceive that the sexual language at home is wrong and parents should reiterate and explain to the child that people make up different words to describe sexual organs and activity and the biological language was used to make sure that we refer to the same thing. It is important that when teaching sexual functions, parents start with what happens before conception(Hunter, & Phillips, 6). Some of the words that are appropriately and commonly used for teaching sexual parts and function are penis (the male sex organ which becomes erect when a man is sexually excited), vagina (the opening in a woman where the penis can be inserted and goes from the uterus or womb to the outside), breasts (part of the body which develops in female in puberty and contain milk glands), scrotum (sac which holds the testicle outside the body), masturbation (touching of one’ s sexual organs for pleasure), and sexual intercourse (sexual act between a man and a woman when the man’ s penis is inserted into the woman’ s vagina)(Hunter & Phillips, p.
5). Teaching sexual parts and functions begin in the early childhood years, approximately before schoolage when the child is 2-6 years old. Parents' attitudes and way of calling towards these sexual parts and functions may affect children’ s perception as they view parents as role models. A child often mimics their role model and perceives sexual parts and functions as right or wrong depending on parents' attitude towards sexual education. Module 4: Discussion My first menarche experience happened when I was 11 years old.
I was lying on my bed at that time after strenuous biking. As I got out of bed, I noticed that there is blood stained on my bedsheet. I became alarmed and suddenly rushed to the bathroom to see my underwear. I was right. The blood came from my genital. Although I know that this could possibly be menarche, there is self-denial, and had thought of having a wound on my genital due to strenuous physical activity. I approached my mother and told her about the experience.
My mother laughed at me as I told her my reason what could have possibly caused the blood in my underwear. She explained to me that I was no longer a child and she has now a grown-up girl. My mother stated what I experienced was my first menstruation and it is called menarche. I had searched www. menstruation. com. au and had found stories of young girls having their first menstruation and entering into womanhood. The story I read was about a girl who had been slapped by her mother during her first menstruation.
The mother in the story stated that the slapping act was from an old Jewish custom meaning minhag. When asked by the daughter about the reason behind that Jewish tradition, the mother just left a blank expression and explained that she just had carried it out from her parents. The daughter just made a self-interpretation that the purpose of slapping a girl was to warn the newly fertile girl not to disgrace the family by becoming pregnant out of wedlock. The daughter in the story had viewed the experience as barbaric.
To make menarche more positive and a less scary event for the next generation of girls, parents and significant others should give children an opportunity to discuss menarche in detail and in privacy. These allow verbalization of expressions and clarifications of children’ s concerns. Parents should maintain open communication, making sure that the information provided was well explained. The biological explanation must be provided and assurance that it was a normal experience to avoid fear. When integrating a cultural tradition, it is also essential that rationale was provided and explanations were made that it was only part of their culture and not of biological significance.
Baker, Christena B., Herron, Ron & Mott, Mariam. Rebuilding Children's Lives: A Blueprint for Treatment Foster Parents. Nebraska: The Boys Town Press, 1996. p. 173.
Hunter, Judy & Phillips, Sheila. PSHE and Citizenship: Key Stage 2. London: Nelson Thornes Ltd., 2002. p. 2-10.