Talking To Toddlers And Preschoolers About Sex

For those who are interested to know what experts think parents should share with their preschoolers about sexuality, below please find some info. Having the knowledge is good though it does not mean you have to tail 100%.Please note that info are mostly from the western countries as Asian countries have minimal to begin with. Early childhood educators are trained in these and at degree and above level, some are required to read through research journals, etc and write papers as assignments.

Apply knowledge based on your discretion.

Sex education: Talking to toddlers and preschoolers about sex

By Mayo Clinic staff

Sex education often begins with a child’s curiosity about his or her body. Here’s how to set the stage for sex education — and how to answer your child’s questions.

Sex education is a topic many parents would prefer to avoid. And if you have a young child, you might think you’re off the hook — at least for a while. But that’s not necessarily true. Sex education can begin anytime. Let your child set the pace with his or her questions.

Early exploration

As children learn to walk and talk, they also begin to learn about their bodies. Open the door to sex education by teaching your child the proper names for his or her sex organs, perhaps during bath time. If your child points to a body part, simply tell him or her what it is. This is also a good time to talk about which parts of the body are private.

When your child asks questions about his or her body — or yours — don’t giggle, laugh or get embarrassed. Take the questions at face value. Offer direct, age-appropriate responses. If your child wants to know more, he or she will ask.

Expect self-stimulation

Many toddlers express their natural sexual curiosity through self-stimulation. Boys may pull at their penises, and girls may rub their external genitalia. Teach your child that masturbation is a normal — but private — activity. If your child starts masturbating in public, try to distract him or her. If that fails, take your child aside for a reminder about the importance of privacy.

Sometimes, frequent masturbation can indicate a problem in a child’s life. Perhaps he or she feels anxious or isn’t receiving enough attention at home. It can even be a sign of sexual abuse. Teach your child that no one is allowed to touch the private parts of his or her body without permission. If you’re concerned about your child’s behavior, consult his or her doctor.

Curiosity about others

By age 3 or 4, children often realize that boys and girls have different genitals. As natural curiosity kicks in, you may find your child playing "doctor" or examining another child’s sex organs. Such exploration is far removed from adult sexual activity, and it’s harmless when only young children are involved. As a family matter, however, you may want to set limits on such exploration.

Everyday moments are key

Sex education isn’t a single tell-all discussion. Instead, take advantage of everyday opportunities to discuss sex. If there’s a pregnancy in the family, for example, tell your child that babies grow in a special place inside the mother. If your child wants more details on how the baby got there or how the baby will be born, offer them.

Consider these examples:

  • How do babies get inside a mommy’s tummy? You might say, "A mom and a dad make a baby by holding each other in a special way."
  • How are babies born? For some kids, it might be enough to say, "Doctors and nurses help babies who are ready to be born." If your child wants more details, you might say, "Usually a mom pushes the baby out of her vagina."
  • Why doesn’t everyone have a penis? Try a simple explanation, such as, "Boys and girls bodies are made differently."
  • Why do you have hair down there? Simplicity often works here, too. You might say, "Our bodies change as we get older." If your child wants more details, add, "Boys grow hair near their penises, and girls grow hair near their vaginas."

As your child matures and asks more detailed questions, you can provide more detailed responses. Answer specific questions using correct terminology. Even if you’re uncomfortable, forge ahead. Remember, you’re setting the stage for open, honest discussions in the years to come.

Source from:

Other resources selected after a quick browse over the internet, meaning no guarantee of whether the source is affiliated with any gay / religious / etc community as it will be too tedious to verify such affiliation:


Got a shock one day..

Actually, I’m not aware that the exposure to such terms should be so early..

I got a shock one day (sometime last month) when my 3yo DD corrected me during shower time.. "No mummy, T’cher X said it is called vagina." The very next day, again during shower time, "  "T’cher X said that we must cover our Private Part" 

I guess I’m still leaving in the old era… 

So, no surprises why kiddos nowadays are so ‘advanced’ compared to kids during our time eh..




Hahahahaa, nonKiasu! Yes, yes!

Must wear underwear everywhere… everytime..

Obstruct a bit, lest it will be too easy to crawl out.


Regarding "If your child

Regarding "If your child starts masturbating in public, try to distract him or her", I find distracting my boys doesn’t really work, especially we can’t always be with them to distract them 24×7.  But wearing underwear certainty helps.

Found the book URL!

Thanks, insider! I could actually go to the page but I was looking at the covers/pictures in the middle column. I looked at the right and left columns this time and found the link. The covers make the books look like the basic Chinese readers that my daughter has. The extracts look good. Thanks again for recommending this book. ^_^

Chinese Version Link


The link works if you do a cut and paste.  Go try…

Something seems not so right with this Comment board (at least for my system that I saw many syntax, formating language, etc when I did my posting…)


Thank you!

I tried both links but still cannot find the book. I pasted the Chinese title in the search engine box but the result was "0, cannot find". Maybe I’m doing something wrong cos I tend to feel overwhelmed when i see lots of Chinese words on one page. I’ll try again and also with the original author’s name elsewhere. Thanks!

Original Japanese version?

Can only know the details of:

作 者:(日)北泽杏子,绘画(日)泽田橹冬

I got my set more than 10 years back in Shanghai and so it should be published in Japan quite long ago.  Not sure if it is out of print (but taken that it is a good set of book, it should be still available). 

You may print the cover of the book from the website to try.

Good luck!



Original Japanese version?

Hi, insider! Thanks for the information. I don’t think I’ll be going to China anytime soon but I’ll be in Japan next month so do you have any pictures or ISBN of the original Japanese version? Even a copied-and-pasted title will be very helpful. Thanks! ^_^

My Favourite Sexuality Picture Book for the Young Ones

You are welcome amy & buds!

I would like to share one of my favourite sets of books for young children (best in terms of content + value for $$$):


Book 1: 妈妈 (My Mum)
Book 2: 爸爸 (My Dad)
Book 3: 婴儿是哪儿来的 (Where do babies come from?)
Book 4: 女孩子 (The Girls)
Book 5: 男孩子 (The Boys)
Book 6: 生命的诞生 (The Birth / Stages of Pregnancy)

Nice illustrations with simple explanations within a close family setting.  Even breasts, reproductive organs, pregnancy stages, etc, are also depicted accurately and tastefully (not ‘crude’ type).

Original version is from Japan.  I bought my set  from Shanghai more than 10 years back for less than S$4 for 6 books (quality is good with 6 books in a paperboard casing!).  Not sure if there is any English translation version for this set.


If any of you are going to China or have friends going there, you may get a set for keep.  For those who can read Japanese, maybe can consider buying the original Japanese version.

PS:  Strange the link is not working.  You may visit and then search for 小小孩的性教育丛书–生命的故事 to look at sample pages.  Below shows text from Book 2:




Nice one, insider..

Nice one, insider..

Concise and straightforward. Kudos.


thanks for infor

Thanks for infor and website reference.

It might be handy one day.

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