And the last thing schools can do to create a body confident environment is to make sure it is using tested, evidence-based body image curriculum in health or advisory classes, which is the last step on our agenda today, and we will spend a couple minutes here.  But, before I launch in, do you have any questions about these 3 steps?

I am recommending Dove’s Confident Mecurriculum to you.  It is part of Dove’s Self Esteem project that the company adopted in 2004.  I have a link to it on page 2 of the handout.  It is a free resource. 

The new version is 6 months old and it was created in the UK.  Dove hired the best team of psychologists, educators, and researchers.

Most schools in the UK are using this. They are way ahead of us in addressing body image in the schools.

There are 2 versions of Confident Me, they call them workshops.  There’s a 5 session workshop and single session workshop. The 5 session workshop spends is made to be delivered in 5 50 minutes classes and covers more material. 

The Single Session workshop is created to spend 1  50 minute class period on it.  It goes faster and covers the first 2 workshops of the 5 session version’s material more quickly.  They’ve done studies that won’t surprise the educators in the room that basically say the more the kids are exposed to the material, the better it sticks.

For middle school, I recommend doing the 5 session workshop. This is probably the kids’ first introduction to the topic, and it goes slower and covers more.  For high school, I recommend doing the single session.  And, for high school, I suggest you to plan to spend 2 class periods on it, again assuring the material will stick better.

The single session version goes faster for older kids, and we got the feedback from the high school kids that the 5 session version went too slowly for them.

The single session workshop is also a nice circle back through material for kids have had some body image discussion in middle school.

The material created to be self-explanatory.Teachers don’t need training on it. But, the Confident Mewebsite has a few 3 minute videos for teachers. 

The five session workshop covers:

Appearance Ideal

Media Messages

Confronting Comparisons

Banish Body Talk

Be the Change

The single session workshop covers Appearance Ideals and Media Messages in one 50 minute session.  I’m going to walk you this session in a little more depth so you are familiar with it when you use the resource. Each of the sessions of the 5 session workshop is formatted in the same way.

Appearance Ideals and Media Messages

Appearance Ideals & Appearance Pressures

Styles through time

Where do we get messages about what we should look like?

Professional and personal media: how images and messages are distortions of the truth.Learn to resist appearance pressures by avoiding comparisons and challenging appearance ideals in media. 

What are different media we can think of?

Which are professional and which are personal?

EXTENTION ACTIVITY: How can social media be manipulated?

How can images be manipulated: before and after

Video: A Selfie

Talk about decisions made before and after shot was taken

Decoding media ad messages

What’s being sold in this ad?

Why would they make the person in this ad attractive?

What’s the overall message of the ad?

Why is professional media created this way?

What could you do?

Personal and Social Media on page 21 should come after page 17

Video: Change One Thing


How can social media be manipulated?

How does that make them feel?

What can we do about this?

Goal setting: PAGE 18 and 19

What can you do to address the pressures? 

Next I’m going to just show you what the material has to offer:

So, 91% the high school kids we surveyed said it was good idea to talk about body image.  We also asked them specifically about Confident Me, the curriculum.

We asked, How useful was the information to situations you encounter?

60% said that it was useful.

We asked if the Presentations gave you skills you can access about appearance, managing media, or making comparisons?

70% said that it gave them skills.Many of the comment that I quoted were responses to this question. 

A word to the wise, we found 3 students to keep an eye out for while you are teaching this material.  You may have come across students like each of these teaching sex ed.  

First, you may get the non-engaged studentwho is just not interested in the discussion. We thought we’d find more of the 50% of boys who are fine with their bodies to fit into this group. As I mentioned, most boys are very engaged in the subject matter, even if it doesn’t apply to them they realize it applies to their friends, especially most girls. 

Then, you could get the naïve student who hadn’t thought about body image before. We had a survey back from a girl who said it was her first time thinking about it, and it scared her. Maybe you see this student in sex ed where they just hadn’t thought much of sex before. She doesn’t have much of a framework to put the discussion in, and might need more discussion from you after class. 

Then there is the student at risk for an eating disorder. This student may already be diagnosed, or may have all the symptoms and no one has intervened yet. This discussion could be painful for this student.This might be similar in your sex education unit to having a child that’s suffered sexual abuse or violence. 

Here is a great instance to use that point person I mentioned to get this student through the right channels in the school.