SCHOOL PARTNER BASED PROGRAMMING
Research has found that the Girls Inc. experience makes a lasting difference in the lives of the girls we serve. And so, we are compelled to grow and bring Girls Inc. to more youth. That is why we have expanded our service delivery model to include school-based programming for both girls and boys around healthy sexuality, substance use prevention, and self-esteem building. In addition to the full Girls Inc. experience being delivered at our center in Shelbyville, we have taken programming that addresses the major issues that our youth face today, to both boys and girls in grades 4-8 in all schools in Shelby, Decatur, and Rush Counties.
Informed Together is a program designed for students in 4th and 5th grade. During this program, students learn the basics of puberty. They learn that puberty is the time in a person’s life when the reproductive system matures and changes so that their body can reproduce someday when they are older if they choose to do so. Students learn the medically correct terms for their own reproductive anatomy and how their reproductive system works. Students also learn about non-communicable and communicable diseases, and how proper hygiene prevents the spread of communicable diseases. Students learn through engaging discussions and activities throughout the program and are encouraged to ask questions. Students also receive a hygiene kit at the conclusion of the program.
INFORMED AND IN CHARGE
Our Informed and In Charge program (for students ages 12-14) allows students to learn to identify, establish, and cultivate healthy relationships through understanding personal values, goals, and decisions and assertive communication. Students will increase their understanding of sexuality, including ways to demonstrate respect, equity, and fairness. Students will also gain critical information and participate in opportunities to communicate about their bodies and their values around sexual decision-making. Throughout the program, students experience the power of a support system and build critical thinking skills for being sexually healthy. We work to ensure that students have the skills, knowledge, and support to take charge of their sexual health and avoid risky behavior.
Students participate in approximately 8 hours of healthy sexuality instruction where they are immersed in a safe and inclusive environment. Students are encouraged to ask questions and engage in interactive activities and discussions throughout the program. They explore values, practice responses in different situations, and think about their future. This helps students identify ways and reasons to avoid unplanned pregnancies and prevent sexually transmitted infections, including HIV.
Through program participation in Taking Charge, students will deepen their understanding of sexual health and gain knowledge, skills, and attitudes that will help them integrate healthy sexuality into their lives. Taking Charge will focus on healthy relationships by helping students to focus on their personal identity, boundary setting, communication, exercising personal rights, and navigating interpersonal relationships with a special emphasis on healthy and safe relationship characteristics. Students will also learn how the reproductive system works and information about factors that contribute to the risk of sexually transmitted infections and unintended pregnancy and how to make decisions to reduce these risks. Taking Charge is intended for students in grades 9-12.
TOO GOOD PROGRAM
The Too Good for Drugs and the Social Perspectives Expansion is a family of evidence-based programs written by prevention specialists to build awareness of healthy life skills and promote unity throughout schools. Students come together to take a stand against unhealthy behaviors and share their commitment to leading a healthy life. Skill development concepts built into the program promote positive attitudes and choices. Too Good uses cooperative learning to give students the opportunity to have fun while participating in this program. Lessons include role-plays, in-class discussions, games, and more!
The entire Too Good for Drugs and Social Perspectives program includes 15 engaging sessions. Before students even discuss various substance use, they learn goal-setting and decision-making skills, how to manage emotions and communicate effectively and how to establish healthy relationships. Then they learn the harmful effects of various substance use. Then to wrap up the program, students participate in lessons in which they learn valuable life skills to help them navigate through tough situations. They learn how to respect themselves and others, conflict resolution, anger management and identify and manage bullying situations, as well as various situations of violence.
FOUNDATIONS IN PERSONAL FINANCE
Personal finance is 80% behavior and 20% head knowledge. Teaching teens how to take control of their money can help them avoid huge financial struggles and mistakes later in life. Girls Inc. uses Dave Ramsey’s Foundations in Personal Finance to empower students with the knowledge and application of basic financial principles so they can make sound financial decisions in life.
Girls Inc has discovered a valuable resource to help teach important life skills to students in Middle School. Overcoming Obstacles is a free, research-based, and award-winning curriculum. The skills taught throughout Overcoming Obstacles lead to the development of competencies in many areas of life. Girls Inc has decided to focus on Conflict Resolution. In order for students to experience success in resolving conflicts, they need to understand the nature of the conflict, to be able to identify and control emotions in conflict, use communication skills effectively, and apply the skills to conflict situations.
Girls Inc has developed programming using the Overcoming Obstacles curriculum to effectively teach Conflict Resolution to middle school students in Shelby County. Each school that has selected to have this program presented, has specific needs, and those specific needs are what shape the program presented in that school.
WIN AT SOCIAL
Social media is more than how students are social. It’s embedded in their entire world. Ninety-five percent of teens regularly use a cell phone. Forty-five percent of teens say that they’re online almost constantly. Teens use 8.3 hours of screen time each day for entertainment. Without proper education, students risk their health, happiness, and success. Many teens are experiencing anxiety and depression, and parents are worried that their child is addicted to technology. Technology and student experiences are evolving faster than ever, and communities are facing all sorts of challenges.
Girls Inc has partnered with The Social Institute to deliver a new comprehensive learning platform, called Win At Social, that equips students and their families to navigate their social world — social media, social situations, and social skills — in positive, high-character ways. Students participate in engaging and interactive lessons that:
- Reflect on values, character, and interests, both online and off
- Teach students to stay in control of their personal information
- Teach students to balance their time and attention to technology with the people around them
- Equip students to support each other against cyberbullying
- Helps students to surround themselves with positive role models and credible influences
- Empowers students to use their voice to create meaningful change
- Helps students find their own path, no matter the pressure from others
Win at Social also provides information for families and parents to continue the discussion at home!
If you have any questions or would like to know more about any of our school-based program offerings, please contact Girls Inc.’s Director of School Partnerships, Kayla Schmidt, at firstname.lastname@example.org or 317-392-1190.