Our Workshops – Sexual Bullying

Sexual bullying and positive gender relationships workshops

Sexual bullying is any behaviour which degrades someone, singles someone out by the use of sexual language, gestures or violence, and victimising someone for their appearance or sexuality. This ranges from groping, name-calling, sexual assaults and comments on female breast/male genital size. Sexual bullying is also pressure to act promiscuously and to act in a way that makes others uncomfortable. These behaviours happen inside and outside school, in social groups and via the internet or mobile phones.

TeenBoundaries sexual bullying workshops

TeenBoundaries workshop programme

Our programme is delivered to single-sex and mixed groups of 11 to 18 year olds, and consists of the following lessons:

Lesson 1 – Sexual bullying: Gaining an understanding of what sexual bullying is and understanding the impact of sexual bullying language and name-calling.

Lesson 2 – The media: Exploring how the media represent men and woman, understanding the effect this can have and how it can influence gender behaviour.

Lesson 3 - Consent: Defining what sexual consent is, understanding how to stay safe and the ingredients of a healthy relationship.

Lesson 4 – The cyber world: Understanding what cyberbullying is and how to stay safe online, understanding what sexting is and the possible consequences and understanding the effects of watching pornography.

Lesson 5 – Sexual violence: Understanding different forms of abuse, understanding what sexual abuse is, exposing the myths surrounding sexual abuse and rape and knowing where to get help and further support. 

The workshop can be delivered in carousel days, for enrichment and healthy school days, as PSHCE/CITIZENSHIPS lessons, and can be adapted to meet timetabling requirements.


Learning outcomes:

  • Understand how and why sexual bullying and peer-on-peer sexual exploitation happens and how we can prevent it
  • Unpick messages from the media regarding gender and sexuality, and understand how this can affect self-esteem and self-image
  • Understand what consent means, how to stay safe, and what a positive relationship looks like
  • Raise awareness of sexual violence and exploitation, and feel empowered to report it
  • Understand how to stay safe in cyber space

A survey by the UK National Union of Teachers (NUT) suggests that sexual bullying is most often carried out by boys against girls, although girls are increasingly harassing girls and boys in a sexual manner. Research shows that sexual bullying starts at primary school level and usually takes the form of verbal insults by boys directed at girls and women through demeaning, sexually abusive and aggressive language. A NUT study shows that these verbal insults are generally centred around girls’ sexual status, including terms such as ‘bitch’, ‘slag’, ‘tart’ and ‘slut’. Other researchers cite similar evidence.

Alarmingly, these incidents are typically dismissed as playful behaviour or justified through humour. The research also shows that boys are also subjected to a range of sexual bullying by other boys and by girls, although this is said to be less obvious. The most prevalent issue is sexual verbal abuse and being called obscene names. The names that cause most offence to boys are homophobic terms and those that are associated with the perceived absence of high status masculinity.

  • 45% of teenage girls have had their bottom or breasts groped against their will
  • 38% of young people have received unwanted sexual images
  • 37% hear ‘slag’ used often or all the time
  • 65% of gay or bisexual young people experience homophobic bullying in school
  • 48% of teachers have witnessed sexist language from one peer to another
  • 66% of LGBT young people suffer from bullying at school, 58% of them never report and half of them skip school as a result

If you would like to find out more about TeenBoundaries workshops, please contact us.

Find out more about our new primary school work: we have two lessons available.