Valentine’s Day a holiday that millions in love around the world celebrate. Dinner and a movie, flowers and chocolates—that is generally how many couples spend Valentine’s Day. But this year, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the holiday of romance will look a little different. Most people will probably order-in and spend the evening at home.
While Valentine’s Day is a celebration for many, it can also be a holiday where some feel lonely or isolated. If you’re newly single, just lost a loved one, or just feel perpetually alone, it can bring up mixed emotions. It’s difficult for anyone to try and find love and companionship, but for adolescents with varying needs—like being on the autism spectrum or having a cognitive challenge—it can be more so.
If you haven’t seen the Netflix docuseries that debut last year called Love on the Spectrum, I would highly recommend it. The show gives you a glimpse into how adolescents and young adults navigate dating and relationships. If you are working with adolescents who are enrolled in a special education program, you know that teaching them critical life and social skills is essential to their development. That’s why our Healthy Relationships Curriculum offers a robust program that provides educators with the tools and resources they need to address topics like interpersonal interactions, dating, relationships, and sex education with their students.
As an educator, you understand that addressing these topics can be difficult and perhaps, at times, uncomfortable. At the core, issues like sex, dating, and relationships are deeply personal and unique to every individual’s life experiences. But, they are a part of the fabric of who we are and how we interact with one another. You need to be able to explain and teach these issues in a way that your students can understand.
Often, students with various needs are not taught these topics in a manner that they can understand or relate to. It’s important for them to learn how to date, what appropriate personal boundaries are, and what sex is. It would be naïve for all of us to think that students are not thinking about these things. Just because they may have varying needs, does not make them any less interested in all the aspects of being a teenager.
That’s why our Healthy Relationships Curriculum specifically addresses these issues head-on. We know that you want to be able to have appropriate and direct conversations with your students. We have designed lesson plans that provide you will the tools and resources you need to be successful in teaching these issues. With Valentine’s Day quickly approaching, I cannot think of a better time to address these topics with your students.
If you have questions about our program, feel free to email me. I would welcome the opportunity to speak with you.
All my best,
Jen Falkowski, M.Ed.