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Term 1 Topic 3 Human Reproduction – Teachers for Tech and ScienceSkip to content
The main purpose of reproduction is for the sperm (male sex cell) and egg (female sex cell) to combine, develop and produce a baby.
Puberty is the stage in the human life cycle when sexual organs mature for reproduction.
Humans also experience drastic physical and emotional changes during this stage.
The male reproductive organs include the penis and the testis (produces sperm cells).
The female reproductive organs include the vagina, uterus, ovaries (contain egg cells/ ova).
Fertilisation is a process when the sperm fuses with the egg.
The uterus develops a thick layer of blood in preparation for a fertilised egg.
If fertilisation does not take place, menstruation occurs. The thick layer of blood breaks down and it is released through the vagina.
If fertilisation takes place, the fertilised egg is embedded (implanted) in the blood lining of the uterus. This leads to pregnancy.
Pregnancy can be prevented by using contraceptives such as condoms to prevent the sperm reaching the egg.
Condoms also prevent the transmission of hiv/aids and other stds (sexually transmitted diseases), if used effectively.
(Note: It is important that learners understand that early sexual activity can have serious consequences. Learners need to know enough about this topic to be able to make informed decisions and responsible choices)
Teacher Input 7
Place a selection of pictures of babies on the board or on a table where they are clearly visible to everyone in the class.
Ask learners if they like babies, and why.
they are cute and pretty
they are small
they are nice to hold
Ask learners if there are things that they do not like about babies.
they cannot do anything for themselves: must be fed, nappies changed
they cry a lot
they get sick
they sometimes do not smell nice, etc.
Ask learners if they think they are ready to have a baby or do they know of someone who is still young who has a baby. Allow time for discussion, e.g.
parents do not have time to play
they cannot go out
they need to buy special baby things
Ask learners if they agree that having a baby means taking on a huge responsibility.
Show them the different props or things that are needed for a baby.
A baby is not a doll or a toy that you can give back when you get tired of it. The baby will be your responsibility for the next 18 years.
Ask learners the following questions:
How would you handle a hot dish that just came out of the oven?
Answer: carefully, using oven gloves or a cloth
What will happen if you want to pick up the dish, but you do not know that it is too hot?
Answer: you will burn yourself
In today’s lesson, you will learn about how babies are made, so that we can protect ourselves from having babies before we are ready to do so.
Teacher Input 8
Tell learners that we have just learnt about reproduction in angiosperms.
Ask if they can remember what the words “sexual reproduction” mean?
Answer: sexual reproduction happens when a male sex cell meets and joins with a female sex cell to start a new generation.
In plants, the male sex cell in the pollen has to be carried to the female sex cell. The plants cannot move, so how does this happen?
Answer: it is carried by insects, animals, water or the wind.
In animals, it happens differently, because the animals can move by themselves.
Let us now look at how sexual reproduction happens in humans.
Show and explain PRESENTATION 5: Sexual Reproduction in Humans: The Human Life Cycle (Part 1).
Learner Activity 7
Tell learners that we have just learnt that our bodies go through changes during puberty.
If you are between 7 and 18 years old, you are in puberty and these changes will happen to you.
Separate the girls and the boys and form all-girl and all-boy discussion groups (5 to 7 learners per group, depending on the size of the class).
Hand out FACT SHEET 2: The Human Life Cycle - Puberty. Let learners read through the information and then complete WORKSHEET G: My Personal Development Timeline individually and with input of their group members. Use the corresponding memorandum to assess this worksheet.
Teacher Input 9
Tell learners that we have discussed the changes that our bodies go through during puberty: these are physical changes (the way we look) and emotional changes (the way we feel).
The reason why these changes take place in our bodies, is to prepare our bodies to reproduce. That is why our sexual organs change too.
The proper terminology for a boy’s private part is penis and a girl’s private part is called a vagina.
Show and explain PRESENTATION 6: Sexual Reproduction in Humans: The Reproductive Organs (Part 2).
Show and explain PRESENTATION 7: Sexual Reproduction in Humans: Fertilisation, Pregnancy and Menstruation (Part 3).
Learner Activity 11
Learners complete WORKSHEET J.
Use the corresponding memorandum to assess this worksheet.
Teacher Input 11
Tell learners that the chances for a woman to fall pregnant are very high.
A woman can have a child nearly every year until she is about 45 years old. Only then does her body stop making eggs.
Ask learners why they think it is sometimes not good for a woman to have many children.
Answers may include:
It is expensive to have children – we remember from our discussion at the beginning of this topic, that children need food, clothing, a home and an education. Some families do not have a medical aid, so it becomes very expensive when children get sick.
The children will not get a lot of attention
It might not be healthy for the woman’s body to have so many children.
Ask the learners if they have ever heard the term “Contraception” and if they know what it means?
Answer: contraception is how we avoid having babies. It is also known as birth control.
Have a container with samples or pictures of different contraceptives. Show these to the learners and explain how each one works. Also obtain input from the learners on what they know about these contraceptives.
Show and explain PRESENTATION 8: Sexual Reproduction in Humans: Responsible sexual behaviour (Part 4).
Teacher Input 12
Remind the learners that they have discovered how a female can fall pregnant and how a pregnancy can be avoided.
Tell them that being reckless with sex cannot only cause unwanted pregnancies, but it can also have very bad consequences for your health.
Tell learners that having unprotected sex – that is, without a condom – can cause STDs (Sexually Transmitted Diseases).
Lead a class discussion on STDs:
A condom can help prevent bodily fluids (e.g. semen and vaginal fluid) being transferred from one person to another person. But condoms are not fool-proof.
The SDTs can affect your genitals (you can have itching and sores) as well as the rest of your body. They must be treated to prevent long-term bad effects
SDTS also give you a higher risk of getting cancer.
Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS) is a serious illness caused by infection from the Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV). There is no cure for AIDS and HIV. The HIV virus slowly attacks the person’s immune system.
HIV is spread by the transfer of bodily fluids. It can also be transmitted from a mother to her child during birth or during breastfeeding. Other fluids through which it can be spread, include direct blood or saliva contact. It is not spread through sweat, tears or vomit.
Learner Activity 12
Learners complete WORKSHEET K (this exercise can also be given as homework).
Use the corresponding memorandum to assess this worksheet.
Teacher Input 13
Tell the learners that now that they have learnt so much about the human reproductive system, and they are going to discuss a few myths about menstruation, contraception and sex.
Do they know what a myth is? It is a story that is not completely true or even completely false.
Make use of TEACHER CLASSWORK RESOURCE 1: write these statements on big pieces of paper or cardboard and place it in a box. Draw 2 columns on the board: one stating “myth” and the other stating “truth”.
Learner Activity 13
Randomly select learners or ask volunteers to each draw a piece of cardboard from the box.
Let them show the statement to the class and let the class decide under which column each one belongs: “Myth” or “Truth”. Fix the statement with prestik.
After having drawn all the statements, ask learners if they still agree with their choices. Have a discussion on each statement and inform the learners that all of these statements are actually myths.