OWL for Grades 7-9

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Updates from Unitarian Universalist Church of Charlotte

The Need: In just the last 5 years our teens have begun to rely on media for their social interactions. The OWL 7-9 curriculum we are currently using has not been updated since 1999.

We are offering supplemental material which includes movies, websites, and social media sites as a supplement to the program to hopefully more fully engage the class. The material is posted below, by session.

Equipment/Resource Needs: Will need internet connection for the web-based media, a TV for the movie and TV show clips, and a computer and projector for the PowerPoint presentation; the clips may work better with the projector set up. The following media are needed: the movie, Juno; the movie, MurderBall; the DVD of DeGrassie Season __; the documentary, (Sex)abled; a copy of the Learning Channel's Baby Story; the web site “That’s not Cool”; other optional material.

Sessions 1, 2, and 3: Intro, Values, and Language

Sessions 4 and 5: Anatomy and Puberty

Male anatomy:

Female Anatomy:

Body image:

Session 6: Gender Roles

Session 7: Disability and Sexuality

Update from Unitarian Universalist Church of Charlotte

Objective: To provide a visual story of people with disabilities as sexual.

Recommendation: Run session as listed with the Reading and the “What would you do?” activity then take 10 minutes at the end of the session to show the movie clip from MurderBall, scene 7, A Jock. This scene depicts men in wheelchairs talking about masturbation and how they are sexual with a partner. May not be suitable for less mature group. Preview both this clip and the following documentary to decide which to use with your group. You may wish to use both and, if so, time other activities appropriately.

Alternative / Add-on – show DVD, (Sex)abled, produced by University of California students. 15 minute Discussion questions

Sessions 8 and 9: Sexual Orientation

  • Coming out in Middle School - NY Times, 9/23/2009
  • Coming Out, Coming In: Nurturing the Well-Being & Inclusion of Gay Youth in Mainstream Society (2008), by Linda Goldman. Routledge: NY. Linda is a social worker who gives talks on issues of LGBT youth.

Update from Unitarian Universalist Church of Charlotte

Objective: To use visual media to discuss teen homosexuality.

Recommendation: Use the Guided Fantasy activity first; the surprise in it is what provides the most emotional reflective value. Proceed to the Lecturettes, and then do the Match the Identity activity. Finally consider watching the Degrassi (Canadian television series about teens, at degrassi.tv) episode “Pride”, it takes about 20 minutes to run and depicts many aspects of teen homosexuality. Take time to reflect on how we may unintentionally use degrading language and how we might not be able to be a good listener depending on our own beliefs. Prepare for the guest panel with the fresh processing you have just accomplished.

Session 10: Gender Identity

Sessions 11, 12, and 14: Relationships

Session 13: Thorny issues in Friendship

Proposed OWL 7-9 Add-on Session on Relationships and the Internet

Update from Unitarian Universalist Church of Charlotte

Objective: To bring the issues involved in social networking and media to the class for debate and discussion.

Recommendation: In this session we recommend using the website “That’s not Cool” in the Decision Making activity. There are 3 videos Texting, Photos, and Facebook that can be played and then as a class go thru the steps of decision making regarding the potential issues involved. There should be time at the end of class to look at others Facebook or My Space pages is they are willing to share.

Sessions 15 and 16: Lovemaking and Masturbation

Session 17: Contraception

Update from Unitarian Universalist Church of Charlotte

Objective: To provide a visual story of the emotions involved in pregnancy particularly teen pregnancy. We would like to recommend that in the overall order of presentation that Conception and Unintended Pregnancy Options be switched to be able to use the movie Juno for reflective processing.

Recommendation: Run session using the MythInformation activity then take time to watch a birth video and answer questions. Most of the teen feedback is that the Miracle of Birth is too long. We will attempt to provide a TLC Baby Story.

Session 18: Teen Pregnancy

Update from Unitarian Universalist Church of Charlotte

Recommendation: Instead of or in addition to the readings play movie clip from Juno, scene 4 “Whatever”, stop clip after she tells the young man she is pregnant and he has reacted. Spend some time reflecting on how both teens feel, what emotions are elicited in the class, and how to react to such news. Go on to the Finding good Parents activity. Finally consider wrapping up session with the movie clip from Juno, scene 19 “Spring”, watch the whole scene (about 8minutes). Reflect on how the characters and class feel about the difficulty of going to school pregnant.

Session 21: Unintended Pregnancy Options

Update from Unitarian Universalist Church of Charlotte

Objective: To use media to facilitate discussion of both abortion and adoption and perhaps allow for reflection of feelings.

Recommendation: Instead of the Reading play movie clip from Juno, scene 7 “Fingernails”, stop the clip before she goes into the clinic. Reflect on how both teens in the clip might be expressing their beliefs. Wrap up by playing the movie clip, scene 9 “Anything but this”, stop clip after they discuss who the father is. Spend some time reflecting on how the parents feel, how the girls feel trying to relay the news and any emotions among the class regarding the decision to do adoption.

Session 22: Decisions

Questions to ask before getting involved in intercourse

  • How do I feel about intercourse? When would it be right for me? Under what conditions and with what kind of person?
  • How does the other person feel? How do those feelings fit with my own?
  • What makes me feel I want to have intercourse right now? Is there any chance I am pressuring or exploiting them? Are they pressuring or exploiting me?
  • What do I expect it to be like? What if it’s bad and I don’t enjoy it? How would I feel about myself? About my partner?
  • How would we feel if others found out about our relationship?
  • Do I really TRUST my partner completely?
  • What if this turns in to a strictly sexual relationship and that’s all we ever do? Is that OK?
  • What extra strains might come up in our relationship once we’ve had intercourse?
  • How would I feel if we broke up?

- from Champlain Valley UU Society, Middlebury VT

Sessions 23 and 24: STDs

Sessions 25 and 26: Safety and Abuse

Session 27: Celebration and Gifts

Proposed OWL 7-9 Add-on Session on Internet Use

Books and Movies


Sawyer. He's a University of Maryland professor who teaches a very popular Human Sexuality course. Book is Q & A format, based on questions his students asked & what he taught, very funny & factual & conversational all at once.


Parent Resources

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