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  • Privacy policy | RVTS Guide for schools

    PRIVACY AND COOKIES We at aim to treat personal information carefully and with respect. We collect data from those who visit our website on the grounds of functionality and user experience. This information is used to optimize the content of our website, look at user patterns, and customize targeted advertising. To this end we use cookies, which you can read more about in the next paragraphs. ​ COOKIES This e-learning: is owned by RVTS Mid, and uses cookies. By using this website, you are consenting to these cookies being inserted into your web browser. Cookies are a standard piece of internet technology and used by most websites. Cookies are inserted into the internal storage of your web browser, and helps us understand how you use the website. In the long term this information is used to give you a better experience when you next visit the site. Most of the new internet browsers like Opera, Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and so on, accept cookies automatically. If you do not want to accept cookies you have to manually change the settings of your browser. Keep in mind that this might lead to several websites not functioning properly. ​ THE WEBSITE’S OWNER AND CONTACT INFO RVTS Mid St. Olavs Hospital Schwachs gate 1 N-7030 Trondheim Telephone: 72 82 20 05 Fax: 72 82 20 33 E-mail: ​ THIS WEBSITE USES THE FOLLOWING COOKIES FOR THE STATED PURPOSES: Source: Google Analytics Purpose: Collect information about how visitors interact with the website. We use this information in reports made to improve the website, and for general statistics about visiting- and click frequency. The cookies make all information anonymous, meaning they only convey information about the number of people clicking on the website, where these clicks come from and what sites they visit. Cookies from Google: _unam, _utma, _utmb, _utmc, _utmt, _utmz, _ga, gat. Read more about the different cookies and their function at Google. Purpose: Managing status through your visiting the website. Cookies: PHPSESSID Duration: Session ​ WEBSITE STATISTICS To optimize and further develop our website we collect necessary information about your visit to This includes, among other things, information on your web browser, operative system, screen size, unit, and length of the visit. The information is saved by third parties like Google Analytics, and will be stored for the length of time specified by the services. The information is only used for internal traffic related to optimization of the website, and is not given to outsiders. Any visit to our website will be logged by our servers and contain information about the IP-address, web browser, operative system, use/navigation etc. of the visitor. We use this information in fault finding and improvements in the case of deviations, and do not share it with any third parties. ​ E-MAIL COMMUNICATION Every inquiry sent to our contact-mail is saved by us. They are logged as part of your cooperation with us, and will be stored for up to 5 years. We utilize this system with every inquiry, as well as logging of measures and communication between parties. This information is handled internally at and is not given to any third parties. ​ DATA CONTROLLER The CEO of is responsible for processing the collected personal information. The CEO is responsible for arranging internal controls of the processing of personal information, and for reporting and correcting potential deviations from current laws and regulations. We strive to always abide by the current privacy regulations. You are welcome to send us an e-mail at if you have any questions, or call tel.: 72 82 20 05 Home Innholdsfortegnelse

  • 2. Normal sexual behaviour | RVTS Guide for schools

    2. NORMAL SEXUAL BEHAVIOUR Healthy and normal sexual behaviour is spontaneous, curious and pleasurable. The behaviour should be reciprocated and equal in age, size, maturity and cognitive functioning. ​ Sexuality is part of being human, and is in development from you are born, until you die. The sexuality of children is characterized by curiosity and exploration, and can not be compared with the sexuality of adults. Children express their sexuality in many ways; through language and touch, exploration of their own or someone else’s body, sexual activity, play and interplay. ​ In this chapter you will find measures which promote healthy, sexual behaviour, a video lecture by Oddfrid Skorpe on the subject “Sexual joy and achievement”, audio reflections by psychology specialist Steinar Hvål on adults and their responsibilities in children’s sexual development, and a reflection around teachers’ and pupils’ sexualities. Previous Next Innholdsfortegnelse PAGES IN THIS CHAPTER SEXUAL JOY AND MASTERY SEXUAL PLAYING KNOWLEDGE AND SAFETY GENDER AWARENESS ORIENTATION MEASURES WHICH PROMOTE HEALTHY SEXUAL DEVELOPMENT – PART 1 MEASURES WHICH PROMOTE HEALTHY SEXUAL DEVELOPMENT – PART 2 MEASURES WHICH PROMOTE HEALTHY SEXUAL DEVELOPMENT – PART 3 MEASURES WHICH PROMOTE HEALTHY SEXUAL DEVELOPMENT – PART 4 SUBJECT-RELATED QUESTIONS

  • 2.1 Sexual joy and mastery | RVTS Guide for schools

    LECTURER Oddfrid Skorpe Tennfjord is a psychology Ph.D. at RVTS Mid-Norway (Resource center for violence, traumatic stress and suicide prevention). She is also an associate professor at RKBU Mid. She is the coordinator of the National Competence Network on Children and Young People with Harmful Sexual Behaviour, the leader of editorial staff for the website and coordinates Resource team for problematic and harmful sexual behaviour (REBESSA). SEXUAL JOY AND MASTERY The foundation for sexual happiness and mastery is laid when we are children, along with the security of deciding what happens to our own body. Our early experiences make up the foundation on which we form attachments and experience intimacy later in life. Previous Next Innholdsfortegnelse Listen to a read-aloud version of the text on this page 2.1 Sexual joy and mastery RVTS Mid 00:00 / 00:21 What do you think of when I say the word “sexuality”? Or “sex”? If you’re like the rest of us, you probably think of intercourse. We know, however, that sexuality is more than sex, and sex is more than intercourse. The Norwegian Minister of Health has called it “a force”, but the World Health Organization goes into more detail; it is a basic need and aspect of being human, and can not be separated from other aspects of life. It is in the energy driving us to seek love, intimacy and warmth, and expressed through emotions and movement. Sexuality seeps through every aspect of our personality and being; it can’t be separated from the rest of our person. It all has to do with love; wanting to love someone, and wanting to be loved. Sexual development is spontaneous, meaning we don’t have to “activate” it – it just happens on its own. As with other types of development, we are predisposed to it biologically. However, we are also influenced by the environment we grow up in, and different people can learn from different cultural “manuals”. They can come from family, or be a larger part of the culture, but there are “manuals” to follow for nudity, sexuality and relations to others. The goal is to live in a society where our sexuality is acknowledged as something positive. For example, if a teenager is playing with their genitals, we don’t tell them “you need to stop that immediately”, but rather let it happen. Or, if the setting is inappropriate, turn their attention over to something else. This brings us to self-reflection, which is very important in regard to sexuality. How do you, as an adult, feel about your own sexuality? Is it difficult to talk about? Or can you easily speak and think about it? Does thinking about sexuality incite feelings of shame, or joy and excitement? How do you show respect and care towards yourself and others when it comes to sexuality? What does sexuality mean in your life? Becoming conscious of these things is a good step on the way to dealing well with the sexuality of children and young people. But what is sexuality to children? Pleasure, exploration and fun – which also characterize a healthy sexuality. The principles of other games and playing apply too; sexuality occurs and ends spontaneously between peers of a similar understanding and maturity, both physically and mentally. The participants often know each other, and everything should be voluntary with no discomfort or anxiety. It should also be easily disrupted, by adults or other things. To be concise: for infants, sexuality is about closeness and care, because they are forming bonds with their caregivers. When they become two years old, toddlers start noticing the differences between the sexes. An example of this was when a mother stepped out of the shower, and her barely-able-to-speak two-year-old stared intently at his mother’s genitals, before pointing and asking “gone?”. Children slowly become more knowledgeable. Take one of my favorite stories, for example, in which a four-year-old is about to become an older sister; her parents had found her a book about becoming an older sibling, and when her aunt came to visit, the four-year-old grabbed the book to show her what she’d learned. They sat down, and the girl explained, with all the wisdom of a four-year-old: “…and here you see the baby inside the plastic bag, and over there it’s eating cake from the placenta, yum yum.” Role playing is very typical, also for kindergarteners. They may pretend they’re a doctor and patient, or have one child lay on top of the other and move in a way they call “sexing”. This is, of course, immature knowledge. Children’s erotic actions do not have an end goal, unlike with adults. This is important to be aware of when observing them. The time will come when there is more meaning behind their actions, though the timing varies, since all children are different. However, reservations usually develop when they start school. They try to hide away from adults, be more discreet, while still thinking sex is gross. “Ugh, you having four kids means you’ve done it four times.” Children also adopt a mean language at this age, boys to a higher degree than girls, though we believe this, too, is a result of cultural influences. In addition to mean language, they develop an understanding of sexual orientation by learning about homosexuality, heterosexuality, bisexuality, and other terms we use in accordance with orientation. Our society has gotten better at accepting and introducing these concepts, which has helped many children and young people learn about themselves, but there is still a way to go. Leading up to puberty, children become more conscious of how they are sexual beings. They have sexual fantasies and might get turned on. The realization hits that they are sexual and now want to know more: about romance, the world of adults and the world of teenagers. Exploration of their own body is common, along with girls beginning to masturbate. Puberty is characterized by a fascination for body, nudity, sex and sexuality. It’s all about what relation you have with yourself, and your relations with others. You seek to explore, both verbally and online. The phone is never far away, either. Adolescents don’t want to stand out in the wrong way, so they care about when it’s possible to start “doing things”, and what things they can do. They are still uncertain, though, and need knowledge from outside the world of porn and Ex on the Beach; having a penis as big as porn star is not normal. Neither is extreme ejaculation. We’re talking about a teaspoon here. And the clitoris is just the tip of the iceberg. The rest of the clitoris is hidden under the skin on each side of the vagina. This is why girls enjoy being touched there, too! Another aspect of sexuality is romantic relationships. Having a partner attempt to control you is not good, and you are allowed to tell them “stop”. This, too, is all about relational competence. Adolescents in these situations are prone to asking friends or the internet, but do express that they wish adults had told them more about it and how to handle it. So, to summarize, sexuality is a part of us from we are born and until we die. It does not disappear, and for this reason I think becoming friends with our sexuality is beneficial. You, as an adult, can assist children and young people in doing exactly that. Oddfrid Skorpe, Rådgiver, Psykolog, ph.d. Read transcript Duration: 8:42

  • 2.9 Measures which promote healthy sexual development – part 4 | RVTS Guide for schools

    MEASURES WHICH PROMOTE HEALTHY SEXUAL DEVELOPMENT – PART 4 Illustration: Jens A. Larsen Aas RESOURCES Børn og seksualitet (Bok) Stevnhøj & Strange, 2016 Barna og seksualiteten (Bok) Aasland, 2018 Med hjerte for seksualiteten (Bok) Hegge, 2018 Nettsted: Seksuell atferd Ressursside om normal seksuell utvikling, og håndtering av bekymringsfull og skadelig seksuell atferd. Nettsted: Redd Barna - Jeg er her Nettsted som setter fokus på Redd Barnas arbeid for å bekjempe vold og seksuelle overgrep mot barn. Nettsted: RVTS Øst Nettsted med relevante fagområder og verktøy vedrørende seksualitet hos barn og ungdom Previous Next Innholdsfortegnelse

  • 1.2 Trygghet relasjon regulering | RVTS Guide for schools

    SAFETY, RELATIONS AND REGULATION Research into the needs of children and young people who have been exposed to hurtful experiences or grow up in unhealthy conditions, shows the importance of safety, positive relations, and assistance with regulating emotions, impulses and behaviours in order to promote growth, development and learning (Howard Bath, 2009). Do keep in mind that these three areas describe fundamental needs for all children, and create good classroom- and learning environments when implemented in school. Illustrasjon: Jens A. Larsen Aas 1. SAFETY Feeling safe is the most important thing in children’s lives. They need adults they can trust in their lives. Safe attachments provide protection and promote growth (Kvello, 2015). ​ What constitutes as “safe” differs between individuals and depends on prior experiences. Some pupils have reactional patterns that may seem irrational, overly dramatic, unpredictable and disrupting. Reactions like these can be understood as expressions of pain, and be rooted in emotions the pupils have yet to master. Expressions can be both outward (shouting, swearing, running away, etc.) and inward (acting passively, being quiet or rejecting, etc.). Increased safety can be achieved by having at least one adult who meets the child’s emotional needs; someone who supports the child, is understanding and helps regulate negative emotions. 2. RELATIONS All children and young people are in need of positive, long-lasting relations. The relation between teacher and pupil is imperative for pupils’ learning and well-being (Hattie, 2009), and has a big impact on emotional, cognitive and social development. ​ Relational competency in schools is about the staffs’ attitudes toward children and young people, and being conscious of your own behaviour and emotional expressions in the face of different pupils’ behaviour. Professional competency and relational competency complement each other and help you see every individual pupil’s needs, emotions and academic potential (Lund, 2017). 3. REGULATION AND CO-REGULATION Emotions are the driving forces behind our actions, and we need to look past those actions to understand what causes them. The child’s ability to self-regulate is shaped by the sensitivity they are shown by their caregiver(s) (Kvello, 2015). Children who are assisted with regulating hurtful or difficult emotions and verbalizing their experiences, are also being trained in how to self-regulate their emotions. ​ However, safety and positive relations are prerequisites to working with regulation of behaviour. ​ Many children have not learned how to comfort themselves and need adults who can “co-regulate” them when emotions become overwhelming. One of the most important aspects of this is to not exercise any of your power or control over the child, but rather be an attentive listener, accept frustrations and support the child’s self-regulation, and adjust when necessary. A lot of children find it helpful to stimulate their senses, either to calm down or to liven up, for instance by listening to calming or energetic music. LECTURER Kristin Larsen is a special education teacher at Lianvatnet school, a school department in BUP (Division of Mental Health Care, Department of Children and Youth). She has extensive experience with children and young people who display problematic behaviour in school. She has also worked as both principal and education inspector, and has further education with subjects from the master’s program “Children and young people’s mental health and child welfare” from NTNU. In addition to educating, assessing and evaluating she provides counselling and competency training for school employees. RESSURSER Barn, vold og traumer. Møte med unge i utsatte livssituasjoner (Bok) Øverlien, C., Hauge, M. I., & Schultz, J. H. (Red.) (2016), Universitetsforlaget Book: Folkehelse og livsmestring i skolen Ringereide og Thorkildsen, RVTS South, PEDLEX. Listen to a read-aloud version of the text on this page 1.2 Saftey, relations and regulation RVTS Mid 00:00 / 00:39 Previous Next Innholdsfortegnelse The pupils we meet in school all have different pasts and experiences. Some have been raised in a safe and caring environment which stimulates healthy regulation and development, while others have not. Schools have an important task in this area; we are to ensure every child experiences a safe environment at school. Most children are safe, but not all of them have grown up in a safe and caring environment. Being exposed to hurtful experiences can also lead to skewed or delayed development. Carrying such burdens makes children vulnerable and affects their brain and ability to regulate. These children especially are in need of being seen, safe, and having a positive relation. Safety is the most important thing in a child’s life, and a meaningful and safe adult – a teacher, for instance – can greatly affect the future of the pupil. Safety is the foundation for all good relations, and this also applies to children. However, the pupils most in need of safety and a positive relation are often some of the most difficult to get close to. They can reject us, be in opposition, and wish to not be in contact with us. All teachers care about having good relations with pupils, but if the pupil is unregulated, physical, has outbursts, spits on us, insults us or violates others, working on that relation becomes exceedingly difficult, and takes a long time. I once had to spend six months building a relationship with a pupil before we felt safe around each other. But this is worth it, we have to be patient and endure opposition. Our task is to like every pupil. We have to turn the negative interplay around. The behaviour displayed by a pupil can evoke negative emotions in ourselves, and we need to be extremely aware of this. Building a relation and safe environment is perhaps especially important in regard to the pupils who violate others sexually. I am aware that schools have emphasized safety and relations for the last 20 years, and we might be tired of hearing about it, but when we are working with sexuality it is incredibly important to talk about. We can easily become uncertain, feel discomfort or disgust when we hear about pupils violating other pupils, but seeing past that behaviour is paramount. Safety and a relation are therefore prerequisites to aiding the pupil with their regulation. Kristin Larsen, Pedagog, Trondheim kommune. Show transcript Duration: 3:31

  • 2.5 Orientation | RVTS Guide for schools

    ORIENTATION Many people find out early on whether they are attracted to the same or opposite gender, but it is also normal to spend some time exploring your sexual identity. ​ Create a safe and open environment and acknowledge and support children and young people who wish to speak about their own gender awareness or orientation. Children are most afraid of rejection. ​ Children rely on safe adults who can support a healthy sexuality. They need adults who can be happy for them and their sexual development, while also being able to regulate and correct behaviour if it turns violating. Illustration: Jens A. Larsen Aas Listen to a read-aloud version of the text on this page 2.5 Orientation RVTS Mid 00:00 / 00:39 Adults and their responsibility in children’s sexual development 2.5 Adults and their responsibility in children´s sexual development RVTS Mid 00:00 / 01:40 «Children rely on safe adults who can support a healthy sexuality. They need adults who can be happy for them and their sexual development, while also being able to regulate and correct behaviour if it turns violating.» - THE TRAFFIC LIGHT Previous Next Innholdsfortegnelse Read a transcript of the audio recording “If adults can handle speaking to children about sexuality, we signal to them that it’s okay to talk about. Providing children and young people with this understanding will also be good for them in the long run. Now, say we shun sexuality instead of talk about it. Say we minimize the issue instead of facing it head on. What signals would we be sending? We would be telling children this isn’t a subject we are supposed to talk about. The thing is, talking about sex with a child, adolescent, or your own children can feel a bit awkward. Many parents don’t know what to say. I think conveying to the children that it is alright to talk about sexuality is incredibly important, and makes it easier for them to approach the subject as well. This is really good for people who experience bad things, like their boundaries being violated and exploited, or acquiescing to things that are not okay. Having the positive experience of being able to talk about it means they can tell an adult and receive help. If surrounding adults had shunned the subject, it might have been a lot harder to do this, but I am only thinking out loud.”

  • 2.7 Measures which promote healthy sexual development – part 2 | RVTS Guide for schools

    Strategies Measures Give praise, positive attention Guidance, descriptive comments Co-regulation Discuss different kinds of coping strategies (e.g. similarities between thoughts, emotions and behaviour, problem solving skills) Conversing, observational learning Empathy (e.g. showing you are compassionate toward others, giving compliments) Self-control (e.g. learning about emotions and regulation) BEHAVIOURAL SUPPORT STRATEGIES COGNITION-ORIENTED STRATEGIES SOCIAL SKILLS Cooperation (e.g. friendship skills, sharing, helping others, following rules and instructions) Self-assertion (e.g. introducing oneself, taking the initiative, resisting pressure) Responsibility (e.g. keeping agreements, turning down unreasonable suggestions from others) Tell someone when experiencing something difficult, unreasonable or uncomfortable MEASURES WHICH PROMOTE HEALTHY SEXUAL DEVELOPMENT – PART 2 Listen to a read-aloud version of the text on this page 2.7 social an emotional competence RVTS Mid 00:00 / 02:35 «Social competence and social skills are important for children and young people’s developing relations with both peers and adults.» - VEILEDER UDIR, P.10 Previous Next Innholdsfortegnelse 2. SOCIAL AND EMOTIONAL COMPETENCE Education in social and emotional competency is the second component of the universal prevention of harmful sexual behaviour. In the core curriculum of the Knowledge Promotion Reform 20, social learning and development is described in Section 2.1: ​ “Being able to understand what others think, feel and experience is the basis for achieving empathy and friendship between pupils (…). Everyone shall learn to cooperate, work with others and develop abilities within co-determination and co-responsibility” ( ​ Several programs have been developed for schools aiming to teach their pupils social and emotional skills. The programs used in prevention contain mostly the same topics and areas of competence (see Useful resources). Observational learning and reinforcing desired behaviour are central principles, based around the idea that changes in children’s behaviour happen through changes in the behaviour of significant adults. The teacher becomes an important role model in how to behave properly in a classroom, by themselves being a good example of such behaviour. DIFFERENT STRATEGIES Education in social and emotional competency can be based on different strategies:

  • Course overview | RVTS Guide for schools

    COURSE OVERVIEW This guide is structured after the principles of the Traffic Light where sexual behaviour is divided into green, yellow and red behaviour, corresponding with healthy, problematic and harmful sexual behaviour. It can sometimes be difficult, for both the child inflicting harm and the child being harmed, to differentiate between healthy sexual fun, and problematic and harmful sexual behaviour. 1. PROFESSIONAL UNDERSTANDING OF CHILDREN’S DEVELOPMENT New research has shown that proper care stimulates children’s development, while bad experiences and trauma can lead to delayed or skewed development. 7 pages - around 1 hour Begin 2. NORMAL SEXUAL BEHAVIOUR Healthy and normal sexual behaviour is spontaneous, curious and pleasurable. The behaviour should be reciprocated and equal in age, size, maturity and cognitive functioning. 19 pages - around 2 hours Begin 3. PROBLEMATIC SEXUAL BEHAVIOUR Problematic or harmful sexual behaviour is what we consider unhealthy. This is behaviour with concerning intensity and frequency, or behaviour which does not correlate to the appropriate age- or developmental maturity. It can also be a discrepancy in dominance by one party behaving threateningly or attempting to coerce (by offering clothes or candy, for instance) the other party into joining sexual games. 6 pages - around 1 hour Begin 4. MANAGING PROBLEMATIC SEXUAL BEHAVIOUR If any of the school staff suspects a pupil of displaying problematic or harmful sexual behaviour, they should bring this to someone’s attention right away. The concerns often begin with vague gut feelings and uncertainty about the violating behaviour. Discuss your worries with professionals as early as possible, so the correct measures can be speedily implemented at the school. 14 pages - around 30 minutes Begin 5. HARMFUL SEXUAL BEHAVIOUR Harmful sexual behaviour is harmful both to the child exposed to it and the child inflicting it, and requires an immediate response from adults. 8 pages - around 1 hour Begin 6. MANAGING HARMFUL SEXUAL BEHAVIOUR 16 pages - around 1 hour Begin 7. LIST OF LITERATURE AND APPENDICES 8 pages - no estimated time Begin

  • 1.6 Duty to inform and duty to report | RVTS Guide for schools

    DUTY TO INFORM AND DUTY TO REPORT You have a duty to provide information if the Child Welfare Service requests information about a case wherein they suspect neglect, physical abuse, sexual assault etc. (the Education Act Section 15-3 and the Kindergarten Act Section 22). ​ The duty to report is essentially the same as the duty to provide information, with the key difference of it being YOUR responsibility to report it if you suspect neglect or assault. Previous Next Innholdsfortegnelse Listen to a read-aloud version of the text on this page 1.6 Duty to inform and duty to report RVTS Mid 00:00 / 00:35

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