The comic character provides an entertaining introduction to the topic of puberty
For a personal, social and health education teacher with a class of 11- to 12-year-olds, few topics are more important than puberty, and few are as fraught with difficulty.
Placing this unit at the right point during the year is critical. If you start too early, your students are unlikely to know each other well and won't feel particularly comfortable with each other. This leads to extra embarrassment that manifests in children either clamming up entirely or becoming ridiculously silly - neither of which is conducive to good learning. Starting too late in the year is just as bad, as many children - girls, especially - are likely to have started puberty already.
I always teach this unit just after the Christmas holidays as it is a useful midpoint between the two extremes. Sending a letter home letting students and parents know that this unit is on the horizon when they get back from their break is advisable, as it means students can prepare and parents have time to talk to their children beforehand if they wish to.
It is important to set the tone in the first lesson. I remind students that they are going to be learning factual information, just the same as in any academic lesson; and that learning new facts, even embarrassing ones, is fundamentally a good thing.
I like to point out that giggling when certain words are said is all right, provided that it doesn't get out of hand.
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