Sexuality Education for Our Whole Lives
Our faith has many things for which it is known: social justice, welcoming, and “outside-the-box” church services, to name a few. But one of our shining accomplishments is our sexuality education. The UUA created this in collaboration with the United Church of Christ, one of our close companions in liberal faith. The Our Whole Lives sexuality education courses are nationally recognized for their depth and breadth. OWL, as it is affectionately called, offers age-appropriate sexuality education for people of all ages and backgrounds.
At the kindergarten level, OWL begins the conversation on body parts, body safety and consent. Our youngest ones learn how babies care conceived, how they grow in a body and how we care for them and ourselves. This begins what we hope will be ongoing conversations at home—about our bodies, how they work, how we keep them safe, and how we make decisions that are right for us.
Courses for grades 4-6 begin talking about puberty and how to manage this often-awkward stage of growth–physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually.
Middle school courses (grades 7-9) cover a broad range of human sexuality. They are the most intense OWL classes, and arguably the most important.
High school courses (grades 10-12) cover things our youth need to know about themselves and sexuality as they near adulthood. Safety—of self, body, mind and spirit—is the goal.
Our young adult (18-35) and adult (over 35) courses explore the broadest range of human sexuality. Following two prerequisite courses dealing with sexual attraction in early and developing relationships, participants may choose from a variety of elective workshops dealing with varieties of sexual pleasure, sexual orientation, boundaries and boundary violations, sexual fantasy, sexuality and aging, pornography, polyamory and other extra-relationship sex. The courses include explicit sexual imagery and sexual devices.
The OWL curriculum aims to help children, youth, young adults, adults and their families have a healthy sense of sexuality. Sexuality, cultural values and spirituality are deeply linked, as anyone who has experienced harmful or less than healthy sexuality can attest. Our hope is that OWL will help prevent as many negative experiences with sexuality as possible. OWL is often regarded as a life-saving class.
Through OWL, we hope that families can feel comfortable having conversations about body parts and their functions, about consent and safety, and about the real impacts of healthy and unhealthy sexuality. We hope to make it easier for these conversations to happen at home. We hope that our youth leave our classes with the knowledge to keep themselves safe and healthy. Misinformation about sexuality can have lasting impacts on our children and youth. Many adults know this from experience.
In 2018, we offered lower and upper elementary levels of OWL. We plan to offer Elementary OWL every year from this year forward.
We are offering Middle School OWL this year and plan to alternate Middle and High School OWL every other year.
Our Young Adult/ Adult OWL team will launch our first adult workshops in January and February of 2019, following a free information session, held at the church November 18, 2018.
In March of 2019, the UUA and UCC will publish a totally-new series for Older Adults. Once that series becomes available, we will provide additional information here and through other media in our community.
Our biggest hope is that UUCT becomes known in our community as THE PLACE for comprehensive sexuality education for ALL AGES!
To register for specific courses, click on the appropriate links below:
Adult OWL Registration will be forthcoming!
Contact Erin Powers, DRE email@example.com