A developmental curriculum

A developmental curriculum

Good quality SRE starts early in childhood ensuring that children develop the language and skills to talk about emotions, relationships and their bodies. A timetabled SRE programme with clear learning outcomes ensures regular and repeated input that builds year on year.

A well designed SRE programme should make links with other topics such as emotional health, self-esteem and body image, and the association between alcohol and sexual behaviour. Cross-curricular links with subjects such as English, citizenship and RE, and 'themed topics' help provide a context for SRE. Children and young people also want SRE to relate to real life.

Key questions


Have SRE learning outcomes been set for each year group in the school?


Is there enough time allocated specifically for SRE?


Do teaching objectives balance; knowledge and understanding, exploring values and attitudes and developing skills?


Is there enough content on relationships, not just the biology?


Is there flexibility to respond to the changing needs of pupils, for example new topics identified through question boxes or pupil consultation?


 Does the curriculum include opportunities for pupils to explore SRE topics at home?


 Do local schools communicate to ensure curriculum progression from primary to secondary school?


 Are links made with other subjects so that learning is rich and relevant?


Is the biological aspect of sex education adequately covered in science?



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Primary Resource

Laying the foundations: A practical guide to sex and relationships education in primary schools. Second edition. (2013) Anna Martinez, Vanessa Cooper & Jane Lees


Laying the Foundations provides a complete SRE programme for primary schools including 14 x KS1 and 17 x KS2 lesson plans organised into six broad themes: ‘my body’, ‘life cycles’, ‘relationships’, ‘feelings and attitudes’, ‘keeping safe and looking after myself’ and ‘people who can help me’. It includes a step-by-step guide to reviewing the school SRE policy.

Download free samples: 'Why teach SRE' and Lesson plan: 'male & female'

£23.99 from NCB web-shop (20% members discount)


at sign2 Assessment

teaching about HIV

Web-based curriculum design tool.

Sets of questions to help you understand what children and young people want to learn about in relation to growing up, relationships and sex from ages 3-19, organised by age category.

Assessment, Evaluation and SRE: a practical toolkit for education, health and community settings. Second Edition(2012) Simon Blake& Stella Muttock, revised by Sam Beal& Lisa Handy [Book] 


Teaching and learning about HIV: A resource for Key Stages 1 to 4 (2003) Simon Blake and Paula Power [Book]
Sex, alcohol & drugs Links sex, alcohol & drugs Sex, alcohol & other drugs
Sex, alcohol and other drugs; exploring the links. A policy briefing (2004) [PDF 200KB] Exploring the links between sex, alcohol and other drugs in young people's lives. A briefing for practioners (2004) [PDF 83KB] Sex, alcohol and other drugs; Exploring the links in young people's lives (2004) Jeanie Lynch and Simon Blake [Book]
  homophobia Pshe _ff 37  Understanding SRE
Sexual orientation, sexual identities and homophobia in schools (2005) [PDF 953KB] Addressing healthy relationships and sexual exploitation within PSHE in schools [PDF 1MB] (Factsheet 37, 2006) Understanding sex and relationships education (2010) [PDF 896 KB]


book SRE resource list: Primary [286KB]
book SRE resource list: Secondary [324KB]
book SRE resource list: Further education [349KB]
book SRE resource list: Disability and special needs [270KB]