Grade 5: New 2015 Sex-Ed Curriculum

Here is the link to the Ontario Curriculum doc from which this section was pulled from:


Human Development and Sexual Health

C1.3 identify the parts of the reproductive system, and describe how the body changes during puberty [PS]

  • Teacher prompt: “Female body parts that mature and develop as a part of puberty include the vagina, cervix, uterus, fallopian tubes, ovaries, endometrium, and clitoris. Male body parts that mature and develop during puberty include the penis (with or without the foreskin), scrotum, urethra, testicles, prostate gland, seminal vesicles, and vas deferens. These changes occur as people become capable of reproduction. What are some physical changes that happen during puberty?”
  • Student: “During puberty, girls will develop breasts and get their periods for the first time. An increase in weight and body fat is normal. Boys will become more muscular, get deeper voices, and grow facial and body hair. The penis and testicles will grow larger. Both boys and girls will grow hair under their arms, on their legs, and in their pubic area. The rate at which these changes occur will vary for each individual.”

C1.4 describe the processes of menstruation and spermatogenesis, and explain how these processes relate to reproduction and overall development

  • Teacher prompt: “Menstruation is the medical term for having a ‘period’ and is the monthly flow of blood from the uterus. This begins at puberty. Not all girls begin menstruation at the same age. Generally, every month, an egg leaves one of the ovaries and travels down one of the fallopian tubes towards the uterus. In preparation, the walls of the uterus develop a lining of extra blood and tissue to act as a cushion for the egg in case fertilization occurs. When an egg is fertilized, it attaches itself to the lining of the uterus and begins to develop into a baby. If fertilization does not occur, the lining of the uterus is no longer needed and is discharged through the vagina. This is the monthly flow of blood. The whole process is called the menstrual cycle. Can you summarize its purpose?”
  • Student: “It is how the female body gets ready for pregnancy.”
  • Teacher: “The testicles are glands within the scrotum that produce sperm and hormones, beginning at puberty. After sperm develops in the testicles, it can travel through the epididymis until it reaches the vas deferens where it is stored until ejaculation occurs. During ejaculation, the prostate gland releases a liquid that mixes with the sperm from the vas deferens to make semen, which then leaves the body through the urethra. Fertilization can occur when the penis is in the vagina, sperm is ejaculated, and the sperm and egg connect. Babies can also be conceived by having the sperm and egg connect using assisted reproductive technologies. What is the purpose of sperm production?”
  • Student: “Sperm is needed for fertilization. When the sperm from the male and the egg from the female join together, pregnancy occurs.”
  • Teacher: “We’ve described what menstruation and spermatogenesis mean from a physical point of view. How do these changes affect you in other ways?”
  • Student: “Not everyone experiences these changes at the same time and in the same way, so teasing people about these changes isn’t right. It can be very hurtful.” “In my culture and my family, becoming an adult is a cause for celebration.” “We don’t talk about it in my family. What I see in the media and online is a bit confusing, so it’s good to know what these changes in my body actually mean. The more I know, the better I can take care of myself.”

C2.4 describe emotional and interpersonal stresses related to puberty (e.g., questions about changing bodies and feelings, adjusting to changing relationships, crushes and more intense feelings, conflicts between personal desires and cultural teachings and practices), and identify strategies that they can apply to manage stress, build resilience, and enhance their mental health and emotional well-being

  • (e.g., being active, writing feelings in a journal, accessing information about their concerns, taking action on a concern, talking to a trusted peer or adult, breathing deeply, meditating, seeking cultural advice from elders) [PS]
  • Teacher prompt: “Think about some things that could lead to stress for adolescents. For example, as they grow, people sometimes feel self-conscious about their bodies, but we all grow at different rates and you can’t control how fast you grow. When you think about how to respond to stress, consider what is within your control and what is not.”
  • Student: “Things I can control include whether I have a positive or negative attitude about things, how I show respect for myself and others, whether I ask for help when I need it, whether I am involved in activities at school and in my community, actions I take, whether I am open to new ideas, and whether I make my own decisions about

Personal Safety and Injury Prevention

C1.1 identify people (e.g., parents, guardians, neighbours, teachers, crossing guards, police, older students, coaches, elders) and supportive services (e.g., help lines, 9-1-1, Telehealth, public health units, student services) that can assist with injury prevention, emergencies, bullying, and abusive and violent situations [PS]

  • Teacher prompt: “If you are being bullied or you know of someone being bullied, to whom can you turn for help?” Student: “I can turn to any adult I trust – a parent, a teacher, a coach, or an elder. I need to continue to ask for help until I get the help I need.” Teacher: “What should you do in a situation in which someone is being violent?”
  • Student: “Get out of the way, get help, and do not try to intervene directly.”

C2.2 demonstrate the ability to deal with threatening situations by applying appropriate living skills (e.g., personal skills, including self-monitoring and anger management; interpersonal skills, including conflict resolution skills; communication skills, including assertiveness and refusal skills) and safety strategies

(e.g., having a plan and thinking before acting; looking confident; being aware of their surroundings and of people’s body language, tone of voice, or facial expressions; seeking help; drawing on cultural teachings, where appropriate, to analyse situations and develop responses) [PS, IS, CT]

  • Teacher prompt: “What strategies could you use in a situation where you were being harassed because of your sex, gender identity, race, religion, sexual orientation, gender expression, body shape, weight, or ability?”
  • Student: “Different situations may require different strategies. Sometimes it is best to be assertive and stand up to the person who is harassing by speaking confidently. If you feel threatened, it is safer to avoid confrontation by ignoring the person, making an excuse and walking away, or getting help.”
  • Teacher prompt: “As a bystander, what could you do to help if a friend tells you about a situation where he or she is feeling bullied or unsafe?”
  • Student: “I can listen to my friend and talk about ways we can stand up for ourselves when someone is bullying us. I can stand up for my friend if I am there when it happens, or I can get help by telling an adult.”
  • Teacher prompt: “How might the medicine wheel concept, which is used in some First Nation teachings, help you to consider strategies for personal safety?”
  • Student: “The four elements of the medicine wheel can help me think about my safety and well-being in terms of my physical, emotional, spiritual, and mental health.”

C3.2 explain how a person’s actions, either in person or online, can affect their own and others’ feelings, self-concept, emotional well-being, and reputation

(e.g., negative actions such as name calling, making homophobic or racist remarks, mocking appearance or ability, excluding, bullying, sexual harassment [including online activities such as making sexual comments, sharing sexual pictures, or asking for such pictures to be sent]; positive actions such as praising, supporting, including, and advocating) [PS, IS]

  • Teacher prompt: “Negative actions that hurt the feelings of others can also result in stigma. When someone appears to be different from us, whether it is because of something visible like a physical disability or something less visible like having an illness such as HIV/AIDS or a mental health problem like depression, we may view him or her in a stereotyped manner and make assumptions. Stereotypes can have a strong, negative impact on someone’s self-concept and well-being. On the other hand, you can also make a big difference in a positive way with your actions. Give an example of an action that can affect someone’s feelings, self-concept, or reputation in a positive way.”
  • Student: “Actions that can have a positive effect include asking someone who has been left out to be a partner, praising someone for their accomplishments, recognizing someone’s talent or skill, and making sure everyone gets a turn.”
  • Teacher: “How do your actions – positive or negative – have an impact on your own self-concept and reputation?”
  • Student: “Having a positive attitude towards other people can make you feel good about yourself. It can also make people want to be around you. Always being negative or putting other people down reflects badly on you and can make you feel worse about yourself.”

Substance Use, Addictions, and Related Behaviours

C1.2 describe the short- and long-term effects of alcohol use, and identify factors that can affect intoxication (e.g., amount consumed, speed of consumption, sex, body size, combinations with other drugs or food, emotional state)

  • Teacher prompt: “Drinking even a small amount of alcohol can affect your body. The more you drink, the greater the effects. What are the short-term effects of alcohol use?”
  • Student: “Short-term effects can include relaxation but also reduced coordination, higher body temperature, slower reflexes, drowsiness, lowered inhibitions, slurred speech, and problems making good decisions. Becoming drunk, or intoxicated, could lead to vomiting, loss of consciousness, or even alcohol poisoning. If any of these things happen, medical attention is needed.”
  • Teacher: “What long-term consequences can result from alcohol abuse?”
  • Student: “Addiction, liver damage, financial problems, family or relationship issues, and emotional and mental problems are some of the possible consequences of long-term alcohol abuse.”

C2.3 demonstrate the ability to apply decision-making, assertiveness, and refusal skills to deal with pressures pertaining to alcohol use or other behaviours that could later lead to addiction (e.g., smoking, drug use, gambling) [IS]

  • Teacher prompt: “What might you do if someone is pressuring you to try alcohol or a cigarette?”
  • Student: “I can try to avoid situations where I might be offered alcohol or cigarettes. If I can’t, I can say strongly and clearly that I do not want to participate. I can also mention problems that I’d rather avoid, like bad breath, disease, and impairment – or I can just make a joke and change the subject.”

C3.3 identify personal and social factors (e.g., emotional, physical, mental, spiritual, cultural, legal, media, and peer influences) that can affect a person’s decision to drink alcohol at different points in his or her life [CT]

  • Teacher prompt: “How realistic are the messages that we get from the media about drinking alcohol?”
  • Student: “On television, you see people having fun, being sociable, and doing cool things while drinking. You do not often see images in the media of someone who has passed out or who has caused a car crash or who is in an abusive relationship because of alcohol.”
  • Teacher prompt: “Some adults choose to drink alcohol in social settings or during celebrations. How is this different from a teen drinking alcohol?”
  • Student: “It is legal for adults to drink alcohol. Drinking in moderation, avoiding getting drunk, and following the law about drinking and driving are some of the responsibilities that adults who choose to drink alcohol have to accept.”

Healthy Eating

C2.1 explain how to use nutrition facts tables and ingredient lists on food labels to make healthier personal food choices [CT]

  • Teacher prompt: “Food labels contain a lot of information, including the product name, product claims, an ingredient list, and a nutrition facts table, which identifies the nutrients in the product, the number of calories per serving, the serving size, and other information, such as the amount of trans fats. How can you use this information to evaluate food choices?”
  • Student: “I can check the nutrition facts table to see how much fat, sugar, and salt is in the product. Foods with less saturated fat, trans fats, salt, and sugar are better than those with more. However, growing bodies do need a certain amount of fat for healthy growth. Foods with more nutrients like fibre and vitamins A and C are healthier than those with smaller amounts of these nutrients. I can use this knowledge to help me make healthier food choices at home and to help my family make healthier choices when we go shopping – for example, by choosing 100 per cent fruit juice instead of fruit-flavoured drinks. I can also use similar information about the ingredients in food at restaurants and fast-food places, if it is available.”

C3.1 describe how advertising and media influences affect food choices (e.g., TV commercials, product packaging, celebrity endorsements, product placements in movies and programs, idealized body images in movies and programs, magazine articles promoting fad diets), and explain how these influences can be evaluated to make healthier choices

(e.g., critically examining the reasons for celebrity endorsements or the plausibility of product claims, checking whether there is information in the advertisement that verifies the claims, asking for information about product ingredients and nutrients, critically examining the reality and healthiness of idealized body images in the media, evaluating diet plans against accepted nutritional criteria such as those used in Canada’s Food Guide) [CT]

  • Teacher prompt: “What might you think about when you see a professional athlete drinking an energy drink in a commercial?”
  • Student: “The advertisement is trying to influence me to buy the drink. But just because the ad says a professional athlete drinks it does not mean that it is healthy for me or that I need to drink it when I am being active.”

2 thoughts on “Grade 5: New 2015 Sex-Ed Curriculum

  1. question – The new Ontario sexuality education curriculum states on page 156 – “After sperm develops in the testicles, it can travel through the epididymis until it reaches the vas deferens where it is stored until ejaculation occurs”. Is that right? Does anyone have a reference for that?

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