Things you didn't know about porn Part 3

School Lesson Plans

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Our school lesson plans about sexting and about the risks around internet pornography use are now publicly available for the first time. Feel confident about teaching this challenging subject. We are now selling the lessons directly from our website shop. Parents can use these lessons too for homeschooling.

Background

Of all activities on the internet, porn has the most potential to become addictive,” say Dutch  neuroscientists Meerkerk et al.

For the past 8 years The Reward Foundation has been teaching in state and independent schools about the impact of internet pornography on mental and physical health and listening to what pupils want to learn and discuss. Most are fascinated by the workings of the adolescent brain and are amazed to discover how internet activities can affect it.

We’ve also been listening to what teachers need to feel confident around this contentious subject matter. By focusing on the science and practical life experience, teachers will be in a good position to help pupils think through the challenges they face in today’s pornography-saturated internet environment.

So we have developed seven core, fully resourced, lesson plans about internet pornography and about sexting in the context of their impact on the adolescent brain and behaviour. We are making these available from as little as £3 a lesson (see below for pricing) We also have a starter lesson downloadable free as a taster. If you’d like a version translated into your language, please contact us on info@rewardfoundation.org.

The charity has been accredited by the Royal College of General Practitioners (family doctors) in London as a recognised training organisation for teaching about the impact of internet pornography on mental and physical health.

According to psychiatrist Dr John Ratey, ” Your life changes when you have a working knowledge of  your brain. It takes guilt out of the equation when you recognize that there’s a biological basis for certain emotional issues.” (P6 Introduction to book “Spark!”).

Expert Input

We have worked with the assistance of a range of experts including more than 20 teachers, many experienced in developing training materials for schools,  lawyers including some from the Crown Prosecution Service in England, the Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service in Scotland and the Scottish Children’s Reporter Administration, several police officers and ‘campus cops’,  youth and community leaders, doctors, psychologists and many parents. We have piloted the lessons in over a dozen schools across the UK. The materials are diversity friendly and porn-free.

This can be a tricky subject to teach. We ground the materials as far as possible on the science research and provide links to papers for teachers to read. We also draw on the lived experience of thousands of young people who have reported their experiences on porn recovery websites. Our aim is to encourage critical thinking and to help pupils make informed choices about their use of internet pornography at a vital stage of their psycho-sexual development; no blame, no shame.

Age verification for pornography

The lessons

The lessons can be used as stand-alone lessons or in a set of three. There are two main sets: lessons on sexting and lessons about internet pornography. Here is an overview.

*See further down the page for more details on each lesson.

Sexting
  1. Introduction to Sexting
  2. Sexting, Pornography and the Adolescent Brain
  3. Sexting the Law and You**

**Available for pupils in England and Wales based on the laws of England and Wales; also available for pupils in Scotland based on Scots law. An international version is also in both American English and British English with a more general reference to the specific laws on sexting.

Internet Pornography
  1. Pornography on Trial
  2. Love, Pornography & Relationships
  3. Internet Pornography and the Attention Economy

The set of lessons on internet pornography is aimed more at upper school pupils but can be adapted by teachers for younger pupils too.

The lessons overall are for pupils from ages 11/12 to 18 years and fit into the curriculum for Personal, Social, Health & Economic Education / Health and Wellbeing, Sex & Relationship Education in England and Wales and into the revised Relationship, Sexual Health and Parenthood (RSHP) education programme in Scotland. In addition, the lessons complement other areas of the school curriculum such as English, Modern Studies, Biology and Economics. They are also suitable for use in youth clubs and community groups.

Our approach is based on the latest recommended teaching methods to help pupils learn through personal reflection, paired work, group discussion and open debate. This way they can discuss real life issues arising from use of sexual websites and social media in a safe space. We encourage teachers to use their experience and special knowledge of their own pupils to adapt the lessons, if appropriate, to the needs of the class.

Each lesson has a set of Power Point slides plus a Teacher’s Guide and, where appropriate, packs and workbooks depending on the lesson being taught. The lessons come with embedded videos, hotlinks to key research and other resources for further enquiry to make the units accessible, practical and as self-contained as possible.

Faith-Based Lessons

The current lessons are suitable already for faith-based schools as no pornography is shown and can be easily adapted with the substitution of some wording which is identified in the Teacher’s Guide.

Free lesson

As an introduction to the subject of internet pornography, we have designed a free taster lesson around the popular TEDx talk, “The Great Porn Experiment” by our honorary research officer Gary Wilson. The talk was given in 2012, but a lot has happened in the field of research and use of pornography in the meantime. His evidence-based forecast about how far internet pornography can lead to erectile dysfunction and mental health problems for adolescents has been vindicated in the extensive body of research that has developed since then. This lesson includes an update on that popular talk and provides additional resources for teachers and opportunities for pupils to discuss the issues in a safe space. The other lessons develop the themes in a practical, fun and interactive way and focus on important issues such as sexting and the law, what makes for trust in a loving relationship etc.

Pricing of lesson plans

We want to keep the cost to a minimum to enable as many schools as possible to access and enjoy these lessons. The lessons are the copyright of The Reward Foundation and we grant a licence for their use. The licence allows the use of the lessons for up to 1000 pupils. The charity is not government-funded and relies on its own products to survive. No value added tax is payable currently on the lessons.

  • Lessons are £3 each for a licence for one teacher
  • A set of three lessons costs £8 per teacher
  • A set of all 6 lessons is £15 for a licence for one teacher
  • For schools or organisations with multi-person use the licence for one lesson is £9
  • A licence for schools or organisations with multi person users for a set of three lessons is £24.00
  • A licence for schools or organisations with multi person users for all 6 lessons is £45

*More details about the lessons:

INTERNET PORNOGRAPHY

1. (a) Pornography on Trial (teacher-led)

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In this teacher-led lesson, we ask the question: is pornography harmful? Pupils evaluate 8 pieces of real evidence for and against this question, then present their conclusions and reasoning. No pornography is shown is this diversity friendly lesson.

Using video interviews with former addicts and doctors, Twitter exchanges, World Health Organization guidance and more, this interactive lesson develops critical thinking and debating skills. It allows pupils to express their emotions and thoughts in a safe space about one of the most controversial subjects in our culture.  It also provides access to evidence-based material for HM Inspectors and for parents.

‘Pornography on Trial’ is the first of our three lessons on Internet Pornography. It can be taught as a stand-alone or in combination with ‘Love, Pornography and Relationships’ and ‘Pornography and the Attention Economy’. It is also available in a ‘group work’ format that gives pupils more opportunity for discussion of the evidence. All lessons are available together in a value bundle.

Resources: 19 PowerPoint (.pptx) slides that include 2 embedded videos with sound, a 12-page Teacher’s Guide and an 8-page Workbook for pupils, both in (.pdf) format and hot links to relevant research and further resources.

1. (b) Pornography on Trial (group work)

In this lesson for group work we ask the question: is pornography harmful? Pupils evaluate 8 pieces of real evidence for and against then present their conclusions and reasoning. No pornography is shown is this diversity friendly lesson.

Using video interviews with former addicts and doctors, Twitter exchanges, World Health Organization guidance and more, this interactive lesson develops critical thinking and debating skills. It allows pupils to express their emotions and thoughts in a safe space about one of the most controversial subjects in our culture.  It also provides access to evidence-based material for HM Inspectors and for parents.

‘Pornography on Trial’ is the first of our three lessons on Internet Pornography. It can be taught as a stand-alone or in combination with ‘Love, Pornography and Relationships’ and ‘Pornography and the Attention Economy’. It is also available in a ‘teacher-led’ format. All lessons are available together in a value bundle.

Resources:  19 PowerPoint (.pptx) slides that include 2 embedded videos with sound, a 12-page Teacher’s Guide and an Evidence Pack for pupils, both in (.pdf) format. Teachers are responsible for showing the videos to the whole class. There hot links to relevant research and further resources.

2. Love, Pornography & Relationships

What makes for a good relationship? What role does trust have in an intimate relationship? And what are the risks and rewards of pornography use over time? No pornography is shown is this diversity friendly lesson.

This teacher-led lesson is fully resourced with a Teacher’s Guide, slides with embedded videos, links to research papers where appropriate, and signposting to more resources about porn use. These will provide you with all the information you need to deliver the lesson and enable you to speak confidently about the subjects raised.

To make it more interesting, pupils will consider the issues with the help of a fun cartoon and a video interview with young guy who explains what happened when he quit porn. Pupils will have ample opportunity to discuss these important questions in a safe space in pairs or small groups with feedback as a class discussion.

‘Love, Pornography and Relationships’ is the second of our three lessons on Internet Pornography. You can teach this lesson as a stand-alone or in combination with the first lesson ‘Pornography on Trial’ and followed by ‘Pornography and the Attention Economy’. All lessons are available together in a value bundle.

Resources: 14-slide PowerPoint (.pptx) with 2 embedded videos with sound and a 12-page Teacher’s Guide (.pdf) with hot links to relevant research and further resources.

3. Internet Pornography and the Attention Economy

How do multi-billion dollar internet companies make money if their products are free? What impact does the pornography-influenced culture have on our body image? On our levels of attainment? How can we cut back? What are good alternative activities to help us be successful? No pornography is shown is this diversity friendly lesson.

This fully resourced lesson runs as a teacher-led class using the slides. There are a number of opportunities for discussion in pairs, small groups and for feedback as a class. The Teacher’s Guide provides you with all the information you need to deliver the lesson and enable you to speak confidently about the subjects raised by the issue of pornography. There are links to research papers where appropriate.

‘Pornography & the Attention Economy’ is the last of our three lessons on Internet Pornography. It can be taught as a stand-alone or after ‘Pornography on Trial’ and ‘Love, Pornography and Relationships’. All lessons are available together in a value bundle.

Resources: 16-slide PowerPoint (.pptx) and an 18-page Teacher’s Guide (.pdf) with hot links to relevant research and further resources.

SEXTING

1. Introduction to Sexting (suitable for ages 11-18)

What is sexting? What are the risks and rewards of sexting? How does pornography use influence sexting? What app will help me deflect requests?

‘Introduction to Sexting’ is the first of our three lessons on Sexting. You can teach this lesson as a stand-alone or before ‘Sexting, Pornography & the Adolescent Brain’ and Sexting, the Law & You’. All lessons are available together in a value bundle.

This fully resourced lesson runs as a teacher-led class. There are a number of opportunities for discussion in pairs, small groups and for feedback as a class. Pupils consider the impact of sexting including ‘slut shaming’ and comparing the risk of sexting to having consensual sex at 16. The Teacher’s Guide provides you with all the information you need to deliver the lesson and enable you to speak confidently about the subjects raised by the issue of sexting and pornography. There are hotlinks to research papers and further resources where appropriate. No pornography is shown is this diversity friendly lesson.

Resources: 18-slide PowerPoint (.pptx) and a 14-page Teacher’s Guide (.pdf) with hot links to relevant research and further resources.

2. Sexting, Pornography & the Adolescent Brain (suitable for ages 11-18)

This fully resourced lesson explores the unique characteristics of the fantastic, plastic, adolescent brain. What drives our interest in sex? What is sexual conditioning and how does sexting and pornography influence it? How can I shape my brain and behaviour to be a more interesting and attractive person? No pornography is shown is this diversity friendly lesson.

Sexting, Pornography & the Adolescent Brain’ is the second of our three lessons on Sexting. You can teach this lesson as a stand-alone or after ‘Introduction to Sexting’ and before ‘Sexting, the Law & You’. All lessons are available together in a value bundle.

With a fun video about the adolescent brain and a quiz to test learning, pupils learn about the reward system of the brain and why sex is a number one focus from puberty onwards. They discover how best to build their own brain to be a more successful person.

There is an opportunity for discussion in pairs or small groups and for feedback as a class. The Teacher’s Guide provides you with all the information you need to deliver the lesson and enable you to speak confidently about the subjects raised. There are links to research papers where appropriate and signposting to other relevant websites.

Resources: 19-slide PowerPoint (.pptx) with an embedded video with sound and an 18-page Teacher’s Guide (.pdf) with hot links to relevant research and further resources.

3. Sexting, the Law & You: separate versions for 11-14 and 15-18 year olds and for countries England, Wales and Scotland.

Sexting is not a legal term but is an illegal activity for children to do. If it reported to the police, there can be huge implications for future job choices, even for voluntary work. This fully resourced lesson has been developed by a lawyer in consultation with the Crown Prosecution Service, Youth Justice Legal Centre, the police and teachers. It conforms to the law of England and Wales.

This lesson explores the legal language of common sexting activities and introduces pupils to real life scenarios and how they are viewed by the legal authorities. It is available for two age groups, 11-14 years, and for 15-18 years to reflect differences in maturity.

‘Sexting, the Law & You’ is the third of our three lessons on Sexting. You can teach it as a stand-alone or after ‘Introduction to Sexting’ and ‘Sexting, Pornography & the Adolescent Brain’. All lessons are available together in a value bundle.

There is an opportunity for pupils to consider discussion in pairs or small groups and for feedback as a class. The Teacher’s Guide provides you with all the information you need to deliver the lesson and enable you to speak confidently about the subjects raised. There are links to research papers where appropriate and signposting to other relevant resources and websites.

Resources:  21-slide PowerPoint (.pptx); a 14-page Teacher’s Guide; a 10-page Case Studies Pack for Teachers and a 13-page Case Studies Pack for Pupils (all .pdf). There hot links to relevant research and further resources.

For more details, please contact Mary Sharpe at mary@rewardfoundation.org.

The Reward Foundation does not offer therapy or legal advice.

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