So many times we fight letting our children hear how the public school children learn about the birds and the bees. I don't disagree. I want my children to understand their bodies and their ability to reproduce through God's eyes. There are good resources out there for the physical aspect only that are used in the public school settings. I wanted more than that but what to use? I also found some good Christian based material, but again not perfect in my opinion.
I want my child to learn from the very beginning that the love of husband and wife is representative of the love of the Father and the Holy Spirit creating the Son. I desire to understand the Theology of the Body as explained by The Great Pope John Paul II. But how in the world do you teach your child these deep theological concepts while they are still very very young?
Unfortunately not teaching them is a bad option. Our children see and know much from TV, Internet, ads, and radio. Your first child will know much less than the younger ones but ones. So I recommend the official teaching to change based on the development of each child and their placement in the family, or maybe when they ask.
We found that with our big family my older children had many questions that we glossed over until they were around 10 to 12 years of age. Then we tried to continue to dialogue, taking it deeper. We found one book that really helped with that The Joyful Mysteries of Life by Catherine and Bernard Scherrer published by Ignatius Press. I recommend reading this with your child. Mom to daughters and dad to sons, if possible. I made the mistake of letting our oldest just read the book on her own, and I was pregnant at the time. The book did a good job of telling her how it happened and that it was a beautiful part of God's plan. She did confront me at one point with, "I know how that happened, I read the book!"
Now this is just a starting point. I would not end with this at all. I am loving the newer resources that are coming out on the Theology of the Body studies for high school and college age.
What I don't love about this book is that is presents the "perfect" side of things. It is almost too sticky sweet. I have never seen life that way and the world has twisted the role of sex in our lives so much. This book is almost too idealistic to be at all helpful to our real world children.
What I love about this book is that it creates the words for us to start with. It gives the mechanics of sexual intercourse in a non threatening manner. I love that the language is soft and loving. I love that the reality is so pleasant that if presented the right way your children can see the truth behind the lies that society tells. I love that our beautiful faith is the basis for the facts of life.
Use this book to start your conversation with your child. Do not think you are finished when this book is over. Point out in a movie or show how the characters get it or don't get it according to our faith. Stay involved and as they hit the high school years start looking for a Theology of the body resource.