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Sex'n'Chipssex education lesson

sex and relationships education through puppetry

A live performance and workshop that combines puppetry and other visual theatre forms to look at young people's attitudes towards sexual relationships.

The project is devised by young people for young people aged 13 to 14 (year 9 and 10 pupils) of both sexes, to be staged in schools and youth centres.

The performance has been devised with young people in Blackpool, to ensure that it reflects the concerns and attitudes of young people now.

This production makes use of our TEENAGE PUPPETS. Click here for further information

Teenage puppets originally designed by Georgina Solo

Workshop Information

The show is part of a participatory educational workshop, creating a package that lasts approximately 2 hours. During the workshop, young people have the chance to discuss what they have seen and use puppets to explore the consequences of some decisions about sex and relationships.

The production comes with an activity pack for teachers, youth workers and school nurses with ideas for sessions or lessons before and after the performance/workshop.

Booking Information

Ages Suitable for 13 to 14 year olds of both sexes.
Running time 2 hours including workshop
Suitable venues Schools and youth centres
Availability not currently touring

The Project

DNA worked with young people at Revoe youth centre, Blackpool, in October 2000, consulting them on their concerns about and attitudes to sex and relationships.

Students from St George's and Bispham high schools in Blackpool took this material, added to it, and developed a puppetry perfomance using skills and technques acquired from a series of workshops with DNA.

A selection of students from these workshops devised a show using a variety of live performance, puppetry and visual projection techniques which they performed at their schools and at the Grand Theatre, Blackpool as part of Puppet Up! 2001 festival of puppetry and visual theatre.

Questionnaires after the performances, and other evaluation findings, were used to refine the young people's ideas.

Actors and puppeteers used the young people's ideas as the basis for a professional touring show, combined with an educational workshop, and education pack. This education pack can be purchased separately. Please email for details.


How puppetry can enhance sex & relationships education

What makes puppetry particularly suitable for sex and relationships education is its distancing effect. Just as Rod Hull was never blamed for his puppet Emu's bad behaviour, a young person can make a puppet say and do things which they would feel unable to do.

This allows young people to talk, listen and think about sex, relationships and other sensitive subjects in a way that reduces embarrassment and protects privacy.

Distancing techniques are recommended in the Department for Education and Employment's curriculum and standards guidance on Sex and Relationship Education (theatre in education is also recommended).

Young people who helped to develop the Sex & Chips project were asked: "Would it feel any different doing the puppet bits of the performance as 'straight' drama, without puppets?" The three young people with fewer inhibitions said it would make no difference.

But other members said: · "Sex & relationships can be an embarrassing subject, and puppets make it less embarrassing, it's not them, it's just a puppet … puppets take away the embarrassment." · "You can express yourself through it [the puppet], no one else knows it's you, they think it's just the puppets, but it could be you inside."

All text and images © Dynamic New Animation 2005