In The ClassroomThe recommended time allocation for SPHE is one class period per week or equivalent. Through participating in the SPHE programme the young person will encounter a wide range of issues through a variety of learning experiences. These issues will be addressed in ten modules, each of which appears in each year of the three-year cycle. The emphasis will be on building skills, understanding, attitudes and values important in all these areas.
  • The Ten Modules Are:
  • 1. Belonging and Integrating

    Developing and enhancing group skills and communication skills. Learning to plan personal and group goals and targets. Examining the dynamics of family relationships and understanding individual responsibilities as a member of the school community. Identifying consequences and types of loss. Recognising bullying and being aware of school policy. Identifying staff for help.

  • 2. Self-management: A sense of purpose

    Reviewing effective work and study practices including organising homework, personal work schedules and study skills. Increasing awareness of personal strengths and weaknesses. Understanding the importance of teamwork and identifying sources of personal support.

  • 3. Communication Skills

    Practising the skills of listening and self‐expression. Being sensitive to the opinion of others. Learning and using appropriate communication. Learning the skills appropriate to conflict resolution. Understanding different types of communication.

  • 4. Physical Health

    Learning the importance of personal hygiene. Exploring the meaning of a balanced diet and physical exercise for general health and well being. Examining eating patterns and personal exercise. Looking at the symptoms of common ailments. Being aware of occasions when help may be needed.

  • 5. Friendships

    Defining the nature and characteristics of good friendships. Changing friendships and the impact of gender of friendships. Relationships between siblings. Identifying and developing skills for dealing with bullying behaviour.

  • 6. Relationships and Sexuality

    In planning for the RSE module individual schools will be guided by its RSE policy which will have been prepared in consultation with parents, teachers and management authorities.

    This module is designed to develop communication and decision making skills in relationships. To look at the causes of conflict in relationships. Explore some aspect of sex stereotyping. Give young people knowledge of the physical, emotional and psychological changes related to adolescence. Have a clear understanding of male and female reproductive systems and the development stages from conception to birth. To emphasise the three 'R's, respect, rights and responsibility.

  • 7. Emotional Health

    Recognising the common moods and feelings in adolescence and respecting the feeling of others. Looking at issues of body image and self‐confidence. Appreciating stress and the consequences of stress. Developing skills for expressing feelings.

  • 8. Influences and Decisions

    Evaluating some of the strongest influences on attitude and behaviour and heightening awareness of who influences them and why. Learning to respect the individuality and uniqueness of each person. Learning skills to make and apply decisions. Thinking ahead.

  • 9. Substance Use

    Examining the use and misuse of medicines and drugs. Examine ways of avoiding smoking. Implication of alcohol use and patterns of alcohol use in Ireland. Effects of drug use.

  • 10. Personal Safety

    Examine ways of keeping safe, road safety, fire drills. Exploring potential Hazards travelling to and from school. Looking at areas where they might be at risk of attack, assault, abuse, intimidation or where their personal safety might be threatened. Sources of crisis support such as help agencies.

Visitors to the SPHE Classroom The trusting relationship and the safe climate facilitated by the SPHE teacher are paramount to the effective delivery of SPHE. Carefully selected outside speakers can complement the work of the SPHE teacher but should never replace it.

It is essential that the Department of Education guidelines for the appropriate use of outside facilitators are adhered to.