Making A Difference!
Making A Difference! 4th Edition Implementation Kit
287 Facilitator Curriculum
Activity Set (consisting of student handouts, role-plays and posters; comes with kit)
Required Curriculum DVDs
- Tanisha & Shay
- The Subject Is: HIV (AO)
- The Subject Is: Puberty (AO)
1 Sample Workbook
Loretta Sweet Jemmott Ph.D., R.N., F.A.A.N., John Jemmott III, Ph.D. and Konstance McCaffree, Ph.D.
Overview of the Curriculum
"Making A Difference!" An Abstinence Approach to Prevention of STDs, HIV and Teen Pregnancy is an eight module curriculum that provides young adolescents with the knowledge, confidence, and skills necessary to reduce their risk of sexually transmitted diseases (STDs), HIV, and pregnancy by abstaining from sex. It is based on cognitive behavioral theories, focus groups, and the researchers' extensive experience working with youth. Making A Difference! is an adaptation and extension of the original "Be Proud! Be Responsible!" curriculum in that it integrates STD, HIV and pregnancy prevention.
To reduce STD/HIV and pregnancy risk-related behaviors, young adolescents not only need knowledge and perception of personal vulnerability, but also positive attitudes and beliefs regarding abstinence, abstinence negotiation skills, and confidence in their ability to abstain from sex. The "Making A Difference!" curriculum is designed to meet those needs.
Goal of the Curriculum
The goal of "Making A Difference!" is to empower young adolescents to change their behavior in ways that will reduce their risk of pregnancy and HIV or other STD infection. Specifically, this curriculum emphasizes that young adolescents should postpone sexual activity and that practicing abstinence is the only way to eliminate the risk for pregnancy and STDs, including HIV.
Implementation of the Curriculum
The "Making A Difference!" curriculum was designed to be used with small groups ranging from 6-12 participants, but can be implemented with larger groups as well. The curriculum can be implemented in various community settings, including schools and youth-serving agencies.
The curriculum has 8 hours of content divided into 8 sixty-minute modules. It can be implemented in 8 classroom sessions of sixty minutes each or in 4 2-module sessions. In community settings, it can be implemented in a 2-day format (4 modules each day), 4-day format (2 modules each day) or 8 day format (1 module each day).
At the completion of the "Making A Difference!" curriculum, participants will have:
Increased knowledge about prevention of HIV, STDs and pregnancy
More positive attitudes/beliefs about abstinence
Increased confidence in their ability to negotiate abstinence
Increased negotiation skills
Stronger intentions to abstain from sex
A lower incidence of STD/HIV risk-associated sexual behavior
A stronger sense of pride and responsibility in making a difference
The "Making A Difference!" curriculum has three major components. The first component focuses on goals, dreams and adolescent sexuality. The second component focuses on knowledge, including information about the etiology, transmission, and prevention of HIV, STDs, and teenage pregnancy. It also covers beliefs and attitudes about abstinence, HIV, STD, and pregnancy. The third component focuses on skills and self-efficacy. It covers negotiation and refusal skills, and provides time for practice, reinforcement, and support.
Getting to Know You and Steps to Making Your Dreams Come True
Understanding Adolescent Sexuality and Abstinence
The Consequences of Sex: Pregnancy
The Consequences of Sex: STDs
The Consequences of Sex: HIV Infection
Attitudes, Beliefs and Giving Advice About HIV/STDs and Abstinence
Responding to Peer Pressure and Partner Pressure
Role Plays: Refusal and Negotiation Skills
The curriculum requires the use of a monitor with DVD capabilities.
Types of Activities
The "Making A Difference!" curriculum includes a series of fun and interactive learning experiences designed to increase participation and help young adolescents understand the faulty reasoning and decision-making that puts them at risk for HIV/STDs and pregnancy.
Activities are designed to increase comfort with practicing abstinence, address concerns about practicing abstinence, and provide strategies for overcoming concerns and obstacles to practicing abstinence.
The activities incorporate social cognitive-behavioral skill-building strategies (i.e., presentation, modeling, and the practice of abstinence negotiation skills). The curriculum involves culturally sensitive video clips, games, brainstorming, role-playing, skill-building activities and small group discussions that build group cohesion and enhance learning. Each activity lasts a brief time, and most are active exercises in which the adolescents get out of their seats and interact with each other. In this way, it is possible to maintain interest and attention that might fade during a lecture or lengthy group discussion.
Below is a description of the types of activities used in "Making A Difference!":
The goals and dreams activity focuses on having the adolescents consider their goals for the future and how participating in sexual activity at their current age might thwart the attainment of their goals. It makes clear that their best strategy is to abstain from sex.
Video clips are used to depict young adolescents in various situations. These videos evoke feelings, thoughts, attitudes, beliefs, and stereotypes about HIV/STD and pregnancy, and the importance of practicing abstinence.
The role-play scenarios are designed to provide participants with the confidence and skills to negotiate abstinence and delay sexual involvement. These realistic role-play scenarios provide young adolescents with a variety of ways in which they could use the negotiation-refusal skills that they learn in this program.
The curriculum incorporates the “Make a Difference! Be Proud! Be Responsible!” theme that encourages the participants to make a difference and abstain from sex, to be proud of themselves, their family, and their community, and to behave responsibly for the sake of themselves, their family, and their community.
Theoretical Framework used in the "Making A Difference!" Curriculum
Research shows that curricula are most effective if they are based on a sound theoretical framework. The "Making A Difference!" Curriculum draws upon three theories: the Social Cognitive Theory, the Theory of Reasoned Action, and its extension, the Theory of Planned Behavior. These theories have been shown to be of great value in understanding a wide range of health-related behaviors.
There are two major concepts of these theories: 1) self-efficacy or perceived behavioral control beliefs, which is defined as a person’s confidence in his or her ability to do the behavior, i.e. abstain from sex; and 2) outcome expectancies or behavioral beliefs, which are beliefs about the consequences of the behavior. Both concepts are included in "Making A Difference!".
Below is a description of the three types of outcome expectancies or behavioral beliefs emphasized in the "Making A Difference!" Curriculum:
Goals and Dreams Beliefs
The belief that sexual involvement might interfere with one’s goals and dreams for education and a career. In Module 1, participants engage in a Goals and Dreams Activity and discuss obstacles to goals and dreams. Having sex is listed and discussed as an obstacle. This belief is incorporated throughout the curriculum.
The belief that abstinence can eliminate the risk of pregnancy, STDs and HIV/AIDS. This belief is incorporated throughout the curriculum.
The belief that one’s boyfriend/girlfriend would not approve of abstinence behaviors and react negatively to it, which may prevent a person from negotiating abstinence. In Modules 7 and 8 participants learn how to get out of a risky situation, set physical limits, and learn negotiation and refusal skills to communicate with their partners about abstinence.
Unique Features of the "Making A Difference!" Curriculum
Three overriding themes provide the "Making A Difference!" Curriculum with a unique approach that has proved to be successful with young adolescents:
The Community and Family Approach
An important component of our approach is the strong emphasis on family and community. The Making A Difference! Curriculum emphasizes how HIV/AIDS, sexually transmitted diseases (STDs), and unintended adolescent pregnancies have affected their community. It addresses the importance of protecting the family and community as a motive to change individual behavior. The focus on the implications for the family and community to motivate change is different from the traditional exclusive focus on individualistic HIV/AIDS knowledge and individualistic attitudes toward risky behavior. In this connection, the intervention incorporates the “Make a Difference! Be Proud! Be Responsible!” theme to encourage the adolescent to be proud of themselves and to abstain from sex as a way to prevent the sexual transmission of HIV, not only for their own sake, but for the sake of their families and community.
The Role of Sexual Responsibility and Accountability
Many young adolescents do not express their sexual feelings in a responsible or accountable way. This is evidenced by the high incidence of STDs and pregnancy among adolescents. It is also evidenced by their self-reports of poor condom use and multiple sexual partners. Therefore, young adolescents need to learn ways to be responsible and accountable in preventing the spread of sexually transmitted HIV infection. The Making A Difference! Curriculum teaches participants to make responsible decisions regarding their sexual behavior, to respect themselves and others, and the importance of developing a positive image. They learn that by being responsible and abstaining from sex they will be able to reach their goals and dreams. Participants discuss what constitutes sexual responsibility, such as abstinence, and will learn to make responsible decisions regarding their sexual behavior.
The Role of Pride and Making A Difference With Abstinence As Their Choice
Adolescence is a difficult period of development. It is a time of confusion, mixed emotions, and uncertainty. They are bombarded with sexual messages from various sources, like TV, music, magazines, friends, and their boyfriends/girlfriends. They receive pressure from their peers and boyfriends/girlfriends to have sex. They struggle with issues of self-esteem, self-respect, and self-pride. Therefore, they need to feel good about themselves, their decision to abstain from sex, and their behavior. The Making A Difference! Curriculum addresses these feelings by emphasizing that they can feel proud and responsible and make a difference with abstinence as their choice. The adolescents’ sense of pride, self-confidence, and self-respect regarding making abstinence their choice is encouraged and reinforced during the role-plays and other skill-building activities.
Training is necessary to implement with fidelity and is a core component of the curriculum. During the training HIV/AIDS, STD and adolescent pregnancy knowledge and prevention skills should be reviewed and reinforced. Implementation strategies, training issues, and the trainees’ comfort level with adolescent sexuality should be discussed. The content of the curriculum should be reviewed and the trainer should walk the educator through the curriculum, as though they were students. A question and answer period should be held afterwards. Lastly, the trainee practices the curriculum and receives performance feedback.
STUDENT WORKBOOKS AVAILABLE!
Samples of included DVDs:
Tanisha & Shay
The Subject Is: HIV
• The participants who received the "Making A Difference!" abstinence curriculum
were less likely to report having sexual intercourse in the three months after the
intervention than were control-group participants.
• The curriculum delayed sexual experience among virgins. Among the participants
who reported no previous sexual experience at the baseline, the students who
received the "Making A Difference!" curriculum, were less likely to report having sexual intercourse at the three-month follow-up than those in the control group.
Other Significant Findings
• The adult and peer facilitators were equally effective. There were no differences in
the intervention’s effects on behavior when adult facilitators were compared to peer
• The adolescents who received the "Making A Difference!" curriculum believed more strongly that practicing abstinence would prevent pregnancy and AIDS, expressed less favorable attitudes toward sexual intercourse, and reported weaker intentions of having sexual intercourse over the next three months than did those in the control group or the safer sex group.
• Adolescents who received "Making A Difference!" also believed more strongly that practicing abstinence would help them achieve their career goals than did those in the control group.
No tools available.