School and youth health

What is the EI/WHO/EDC teacher training programme to prevent HIV infection and related discrimination through schools?

Why is it unique and distinct from many other HIV/AIDS related efforts?


What is the nature and scope of the teacher training programme?

The nature and scope of the Teacher Training Programme can be quickly and easily understood by examining the content of the EI/WHO/EDC Teachers' Exercise Book for HIV Prevention . This book is available to everyone, at no charge, on the EI, WHO and EDC websites. The book contains participatory learning activities that were designed by teachers, working in collaboration with health and training experts, to prevent HIV infection and related discrimination. With these activities, you can help adults and students develop skills relevant to HIV/AIDS prevention. Each activity contains information that you can use to help other teachers learn to implement these activities, too. You can achieve much more by working with others than by working alone.

There are three sets of learning activities in this booklet. Each set is designed for a specific target group with specific purposes.

I. Five participatory learning activities to help adults avoid HIV infection.

  • Understanding HIV/AIDS
  • Would you take that risk?
  • Why we take risks
  • Developing skills to protect ourselves
  • Practicing effective condom use

II. Three participatory learning activities to help adults and young people advocate for effective HIV prevention efforts in schools.

  • Using role plays to develop advocacy skills
  • Thank you for your question: Brainstorming and peer feedback
  • Breaking the silence: Advocating for HIV/AIDS education in schools

III. Sixteen participatory learning activities to help students acquire skills to prevent HIV infection and related discrimination.

For young children:

  • Fundamental skills for healthy interpersonal communication
  • Practical and positive methods for dealing with emotions and stress

For pre-adolescents:

  • Skills for communicating messages about HIV prevention to families, peers and members of the community
  • Skills for communicating clearly and effectively a desire to delay initiation of intercourse
  • Skills related to help-seeking and for interviewing to increase knowledge about sexuality
  • Skills for communicating about sexuality with peers and adults
  • Skills for critical thinking about consequences of making decisions
  • Skills for problem-solving to make healthy decisions in life
  • Skills for communicating to refuse to have sexual intercourse
  • Skills for expressing empathy toward a person who is infected or has AIDS
  • Skills for talking about sexual behaviour and personal issues confidently
  • Skills for maintaining a personal system of values independent of peer pressure

For adolescents:

  • Skills for assessing risk and negotiating for less risky alternatives
  • Skills for appropriate use of health products (e.g., condoms)
  • Skills for identifying sources that provide help for substance abuse
  • Skills for identifying where condoms can be obtained

Training is essential

The learning activities in the EI/WHO/EDC Teachers' Exercise Book for HIV Prevention address a logical order of teacher training needs:

  • Before teachers can expect to help other adults and students avoid HIV infection, they will need to examine their own vulnerability to infection, their own knowledge of the disease and its spread, and their own attitudes toward helping others, especially students, avoid infection. The first set of learning activities above addresses this need.
  • Before teachers can expect to implement effective HIV prevention efforts in schools, they will need to justify their intent and convince administrators, teachers, parents and members of their community that HIV prevention through schools is appropriate and essential to the welfare of their children, their families and their nations. The second set of learning activities above addresses this need.
  • Before teachers can expect to help students acquire the skills needed to prevent HIV infection, teachers themselves will need to acquire skills to use participatory learning activities to enable their students to acquire prevention skills. The third set of learning activities above addresses this need.

For these reasons, every effort must be made to ensure that teachers are actually trained to use the activities in the book.

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