Recently in China, certain kindergartens in Shanghai have been using supplemental materials to enhance their sex education programs. Young children around the age of 5 are learning about sex and the human body by playing with dolls that feature very life like genitalia.
The sex education dolls have drawn much criticism from many individuals in China and other countries internationally. Many concerns revolving around the dolls include the worry that this introduction of sexual knowledge is too early to children aged 5 years old. Is this too young to introduce children to the parts of the human body?
Despite these concerns, China a country with an estimated 13 million abortions in annually, one of the highest rates in the world, is grappling with how to effectively teach sexual education in schools. In 2009, 2/3 of adolescents in China had very limited sexual reproductive health knowledge. 22% of Chinese below the age of 18 had sex before marriage and of those more than 50% of them used no contraception during their first encounter. 46 % of American high schoolers, by comparison, had had sex before marriage and of those nearly 85% of them used contraception during their first encounter. Safe sex practices need to be communicated to the youth.
In addition to the sex ed dolls, China has introduced an experimental sex education program to youngsters aged as young as 6. The curriculum includes graphical depictions and descriptions of sex. We know that sex education is extremely important amongst the youth today as we’ve seen nearly 1,000 young people under the age of 16 diagnosed with STI’s , included in our last post.
Is this method of hands on interaction with dolls an appropriate way to teach sexual education to the youth or is this too young to start the discussion of proper contraception techniques including condom use to children? Let us know your thoughts on this controversial teaching practice used in China?
ONE Condoms supports proper sex education and mandatory condom use each and every time any type of sex occurs.