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Teaching resources support positive relationships

Tuesday, July 2, 2019

Media Release

Family Planning’s latest teaching resources aim to support children and young people enjoy positive relationships.

Equipping children in New Zealand with effective relationship skills is more important than ever, as New Zealand grapples with the second highest school bullying rates among OECD countries according to new survey results.

Family Planning’s new school resources for relationship and sexuality education have a strong focus on inclusiveness, consent, celebrating diversity, as well as tools to build skills to manage healthy and positive relationships.

“It is really important to teach relationship skills from year 1 onwards to enable children with the ability to establish and manage diverse relationships with others. Being kind to others, being respectful of differences may seem pretty basic, but there is clearly a need for this to be emphasised and repeated throughout children’s schooling so it becomes part of how they interact with others,” says Family Planning’s National Health Promotion Advisor Amanda Hargreaves.

 “Particularly in this digital age where young people can be bullied in several settings, it is really important to teach digital citizenship to children – being a respectful and responsible online user. They need to understand the consequences of their actions online, how it impacts on others and what to do if they need help. We’re really proud of the content in our new resources covering these aspects,” Ms Hargreaves says.

The content of the new resources - Navigating the journey: Sexuality education Te takahi i te ara: Whakaakoranga hōkakatanga, aligns with the revised sexuality education guidelines from 2015 for the learning area of sexuality education in The New Zealand Curriculum, making it easy for schools to put the guidelines into action. The resources are downloadable, with lots of useful live links and engaging activities for students.

The four resources have been developed with the intention to build on students’ knowledge within relationship and sexuality education in an age and stage relevant approach. The resources in the series currently available are respectively targeted to school years 1-2, 3-4, 5-6, 7-8 and carry through the same five overarching themes:

  • Establishing a positive learning environment: Te whakarite i tētahi ao ako huapai
  • Who am I? Ko wai au?
  • Relationships: Ngā whanaungatanga
  • Growing and changing: Te tipu me te huri o te tangata
  • Staying safe: Te noho haumaru

Resources for Year 9 and Year 10 will be available over the coming months.

Each resource comes with a free supplementary guide for teachers, to help them in their planning and teaching of relationship and sexuality education.

The update of the resources gave importance to including te ao Māori perspectives, opportunity to explore diverse genders and sexualities, issues around consent, and ensuring there is room for teachers to adapt the content to their own contexts.

“I have received great feedback from teachers about the way the resources encourage teachers to adapt the content to their own contexts. This is exactly our intention, as we wanted to support and encourage teachers to be able to cater to the needs of their learners and also the wishes of the wider school community,” says Ms Hargreaves.

The resources are available to purchase through the Family Planning website and have already seen a high demand. Family Planning is also offering free professional development courses for teachers centered on the resources. After completion of a course, participants receive the resource for free.



Family Planning has clinics located throughout New Zealand. Use the clinic finder to find your nearest clinic.

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