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Body Image - Key Stage 5

Resources, guidance and articles

Ditch the Label - 15 Essential Beauty Tips for Teens 15 things that the beauty industry doesn't want you to know

Dove Self-Esteem Project - Campaign to combat self esteem and body image issues among young girls. Click here to see how you can get involved. Or click here to access Five Session Self-Esteem Teaching Resources


Teacher Guidance - Key standards in teaching about body image. (PSHE Association and Government Equalities Office)

MediaSmart - Body Image and Advertising - Some great teaching resources and lesson plans on body image. Also includes a section for young people and a section for parents.

Media Smart Parent Guide 2015

Media Smart Body Image and Advertising - Teachers Notes

You can also use the TV adverts in Media Smart UK's Youtube playlist.

If you do wish to use the case studies, please ensure that your school or educational institution has a valid Educational Recording Agency licence.


18/07/17 TES: How to give a lesson on mental health, without 'triggering'

With an increasing number of pupils with mental health issues, we have an obligation to provide guidance - but how can teachers make sure they get it right? Mental Health expert Natasha Devon shares her advice:

  1. Gauge the level of knowledge in the room
  2. Make sure you are clear in your own mind about boundaries and definitions
  3. Be 'grass roots'
  4. Avoid before and after pictures
  5. Focus on 'why' not 'how'
  6. Build a safety net
  7. Warn against random internet searches
  8. Don't forget the friends

Naked Beach Body Image Resources for Schools

Based on research by Dr Keon West at Goldsmith’s University and created in collaboration with Barefaced TV, this lesson for Key Stage 4 uses clips from C4’s ‘Naked Beach’ to promote discussion around body image and representation. 

There are two lessons to choose from, one showing the journey of Darrell, who is struggling to reclaim his love of exercise following injury and weight gain and the other Jolie, who has vitiligo and worries that her lack of body confidence is stopping her from enjoying her life. Each lesson contains two clips from the show, with follow up discussion points/statistics for the class to disseminate and feed-back on. 
Please note: Naked Beach is a family show and was aired before the watershed. Whilst the makers of the programme do not consider nudity to be inherently offensive or sexual, participants’ genitals were covered and their bodies painted. The aim of the programme was to showcase rarely seen or celebrated aspects of the human form such as: range of body types, range of skin colours, disability, vitiligo and stretch marks. 

July 2017: The Guardian. Standards body unveils plan to crack down on sexist advertisements. UK watchdog takes steps against ads that objectify, sexualise or mock people for not conforming to stereotypes. Advertisements that perpetuate sexist stereotypes, from men bungling housework to girls being less academic than boys, will be banned under rules being proposed by the industry watchdog. The crackdown by the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) will toughen rules on ads that are deemed to present activities as only appropriate for one gender or another, or that mock those who not conform to stereotypical gender roles. 


To The Bone

17/07/17 Rachel Egan: why I won't be watching 'To The Bone'

This mainstream film may be hot off the press, but Rachel Egan has many reservations. The leading character, Lilly Collins, had anorexia in her teens, and she lost 20lbs of weight for the role. This was irresponsible of the film makers. The film also reflects the huge misconceptions around eating disorders. For example, the main character is a skinny, young, white woman. When in fact eating disorders affect people of all shapes and sizes, and of varying ages. In fact the majority of people with eating disorders will never become underweight. Rachel won't be watching for many other reasons, including the high risk of 'triggering'. Of course viewers are free to make their own decisions about the movie, but you have been warned. To read the full article click on the title above.

Girls guide to what a "normal" vulva looks like - BBC News

Teenage girls are being directed to a new online reference tool that helps them check if their vulva looks normal. Available on the sexual health charity Brook website, the resource gives visual examples and advice on how female genitals change in puberty.

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