Orientation: Identity, Attraction & Behavior, Vol 1 & 2
Coming soon in early 2020, the Center for Sex Education is releasing a new anthology on teaching about sexual orientation—Orientation: Teaching about Identity, Attraction, and Behavior, a collection of 55 lessons designed to expand the ways that educators think and teach about sexual orientation.
As the political and social landscapes become increasingly accepting of people identifying as a range of sexual orientations, deeper dialogues and lessons can be introduced into diverse classroom settings. This includes elementary, middle school, high school, college, and professional learning environments.
Education is the primary way to counter negative stereotypes and provide more opportunities for positive experiences for people who identify as LGBTQ+. Orientation is primarily focused on how to teach about LGBTQ+ identities, rather than on how to teach to an LGBTQ+ population. This means it is for everyone.
Orientation is not a curriculum and is not intended to be taught from start to finish. The lessons are nonsequential so educators can select those most relevant to their students. These materials can be used to supplement existing curricula in traditional academic settings, and the educational activities can be used in a variety of community settings.
There are six sections of lessons included in the two volumes. The sections are as follows:
- Understanding the Basics: basic information about sexual orientation.
- Inside Relationships: what it means to be in a romantic relationship.
- Health: the unique health concerns of people who identify as LGBTQ+.
- The Workplace: lessons to allow for increased inclusivity among co-workers.
- Cultural Perspectives: ways the wider cultural landscape interacts with sexual orientation.
- Social Justice: lessons focused on understanding and combating orientation-based oppression.
The Additional Resources section at the end of the manual includes organizations, books, films, DVDs, websites, blogs, Facebook communities, Twitter accounts, podcasts, YouTube users, and hashtags. The section can be distributed with different lessons and can be used as standalone material.
This manual remains faithful to the Center for Sex Education’s long-held principles for sex education that illustrate basic philosophical and pedagogical approaches to comprehensive sex education. These include:
- All people have a fundamental right to sex education.
- All participants need and deserve respect.
- Participants learn as much or more from each other as from the educator.
- A positive approach to sex education is the best approach.
- Honest, accurate information and communication about sex is essential.