As part of Clear Lake Schools' Human Growth and Development curriculum a Puberty Unit is taught during 5th grade. Classroom instruction is provided by the school nurse under the supervision of the classroom teacher. The purpose of this unit is to teach students facts about their bodies and prepare them for the up and coming changes they soon will encounter during their journey through puberty. As this is the first formal school guided introduction to gender specific changes, boys and girls will receive separate classroom instruction. Traditionally about 2 days are spent on this unit. The following is a guideline of things that will be covered each day.
Introduction to Puberty
Review/discussion of other body systems: Circulatory, Nervous, Respiratory, Integumentary, Digestive, Muscular, & Skeletal
Introduce Reproductive System
- A system that enables our bodies to reproduce (make more of). - Everyone has reproductive organs. - Review changes our bodies have encountered from being in utero until present.
View a VIDEO related to emotional and physical changes that happen during puberty. *If interested in viewing the video please contact us.*
We encourage students to talk to their parents, a trusted adult, teacher, and/or school nurse during this unit and throughout their puberty journey. Students are given note-cards to write questions they may be embarrassed to ask during class. Each day note-card questions are answered at the end of class.
Day 1: At Home Talking Points
Q: What is Puberty? A: We refer to PUBERTY as a time of GROWING AND CHANGING, a journey everyone will experience, just on their own timetable. This is a time when our bodies are preparing to become a man or woman.
Q: When did you start puberty? A: As the start of puberty is different for everyone, our journey into puberty usually follows a similar timeline as our parents. We encourage students to go home and discuss when their parents began puberty.
Q: Ask your children what they thought about the video. A: The video covers the different physical and emotional changes we encounter during puberty. Share your experiences of how you felt during your puberty years. What was difficult? What wasn't that bad?
Q: What triggers Puberty? A: The pituitary gland is responsible for releasing hormones, chemical messengers, into the bloodstream. Those hormones trigger the reproductive organs to start releasing hormones as well. Theses hormones are what begin one's body changes into manhood or womanhood.
Introduction to Reproductive Anatomy
Male or Female Anatomy diagram handout
View Healthline diagram cross section
Girls continue to discuss questions related to the menstrual cycle
Day 2: At Home Talking Points
Ask child to show and discuss anatomy diagram and vocabulary handout from school.
Q: Do you have any older siblings in the house? If so, do you ever notice them being moody? What are some other outward signs of puberty besides emotions? A: In class we've covered some outward signs of puberty. Take this time to discuss things like, growth spurt, good hygiene- clean clothes and underwear, showering, use of deodorant, etc., hair growth, acne, voice changes for boys, and menstrual cycle for girls.
Again, thank you for allowing us the opportunity to care for and help guide your children. We are grateful you have entrusted us to be a part of their growing and learning. Please feel free to contact us with questions or desire for at home resources to aid in your parent-child discussions.
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