DVD Reviews for Parents
"The Birds, The Bees, and Me"
From the National Training Organization for Child Care Providers
Review by Nancy Brown, Ph.D.
I reviewed two DVDs from the National Training Organization for Child Care Providers with my kids called "The Birds, The Bees, and Me: For Boys" and "The Birds, The Bees, and Me: For Girls." These DVDs are a short (about 17 minutes each) and fun introduction to puberty, sex, and childbirth for kids 8 to 14 years old, but most appropriate for the 8 to 10 crowd, I think. The script is pretty much the same for both videos and includes the same clips from a pediatrician, but the DVD for boys has a young man named Jason narrating and the one for girls includes a young woman named Sara as the narrator. Both youth are attractive, white, and appear very comfortable with the subject matter.
Both DVDs have cute animated graphics, our favorite was of an erect penis with hearts that fly off it. The message in both DVDs is clear -- sex requires responsibility, do not rush into adulthood, sex is a decision, and abstinence is the best option. These DVDs reinforce how normal puberty is and discuss sex (as baby making) very matter-of-factly. I really liked that the DVDs say repeatedly, "talk to your parents, grandparents, teachers or doctor," "ask any questions," and "it is normal for you, and parents, to be a little embarrassed."
My kids both said the same thing -- these DVDs are a great start for a parent who is a little shy about bringing up these issues with an 8- to 10-year-old child, but older kids will think they are a little cheesy and parents would have to include information about condoms and birth control for the older kids. They also wanted a female doctor on the DVD for girls, but that was a secondary consideration.
In addition to being used by families to start the sex talk, I think these DVDs could be used at Parent Education sessions as an ice beaker and way to encourage parents to start talking to their kids about sex, if they have not started already.
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