Year of Award
Master of Arts (MA)
Department or School/College
Department of Communication Studies
Annie Sondag, Joel Iverson
children, communication, parents, puberty, sex, training
University of Montana
The purpose of this study was to construct a training program for parents of 4th and 5th grade children on how to initiate and maintain conversations about safe-sex and sex-related topics by using Beebe, Mottet, and Roach’s (2013) Needs-Centered Training Model. The main topics arising from the needs assessment include experiencing puberty, healthy friendships, and peer pressure/media influence. The need for better communication surrounding sex can be seen from rates of teenage pregnancy in the United States remaining higher than those of other developed countries (Martinez, Copen, & Abma, 2011) as well as adolescents accounting for only a quarter of the sexually active population, but half of the population acquiring new STDs (Martinez, Copen, & Abma, 2011). Although this study does not address pregnancy and STD prevention, it encourages parents to initiate open conversation with their children about sex-related topics and to maintain this conversation so future topics (such as those concerning participating in sex) are more comfortable for both parent and child. Providing parents with information on important and age-appropriate topics for their children, as well as how to best initiate and maintain open and honest communication, can better equip parents to feel prepared for conversations with children that encourage them to act responsibly when it comes to sex-related situations in the future.
Eickhoff, Elizabeth Kay, "Let’s talk about sex: A training program for parents of 4th and 5th grade children" (2013). Graduate Student Theses, Dissertations, & Professional Papers. 621.
© Copyright 2013 Elizabeth Kay Eickhoff