In the Netherlands, sex ed starts in kindergarten. Learn more: http://to.pbs.org/1cjCfg4
Posted by PBS NewsHour on Wednesday, May 27, 2015
Is there a right age to teach children about love and sex? Some Dutch schools think kids as young as kindergarteners need to learn about the components of relationships -- and it may not be such a bad idea.
Across the Netherlands, primary schools are engaging in "Spring Fever," a week in which teachers focus on comprehensive sex education that includes lessons on love and intimacy. The sessions start for students as early as age four and build all the way up to age 11.
According to PBS Newshour, the program is designed to get children thinking about what feels good and what doesn't when it comes to intimacy and forming relationships. Additionally, there are lessons that focus on body awareness, sexual reproduction and sexual abuse. And research supports this early approach: According to a study from Georgetown University, starting sex-ed in primary schools may help reduce unplanned pregnancies and the risk of sexually transmitted diseases.
Spring Fever also takes a holistic approach to sex as its defined by love and romantic relationships. In a session with the kindergarteners, which is captured in the video above, the children talk about what people do when they're in love. Their responses are simple and honest, which may be why the video has racked up some 4 million views on PBS' Facebook page.
Each question posed in every lesson is considered with the same weight, whether it be about intimacy or dating. In a separate talk with 11-year-old students, featured below, their teacher asks them to describe what it really means to be in love.
"You find someone nicer than just regular nice," one girl says in a video of the session.
"You get so lost in your thoughts about the person that you don't hear what anyone else says," one boy chimes in.
They even talk about dating in the modern world and what it means to break up with someone. Their advice? To say it "personally, not via a message or something," another girl said.
Now that's a lesson we could all stand to learn.