It's Not OK: teaching resources about positive relationships

Topics: Schools Safeguarding and child protection

It's Not OK helps children and young people recognise concerning behaviour and identify characteristics of positive relationships. The lesson plans, films and accompanying activities cover what behaviour to look out for and how to respond to it.

It's Not OK reinforces the importance of building and maintaining positive relationships and recognising and responding to behaviour relating to:

  • online safety
  • grooming
  • sexting
  • harmful sexual behaviour
  • child sexual abuse
  • child sexual exploitation.

The films have a suggested lesson plan with activities for young people to complete to help them understand the issues that are raised.

About It's Not OK

These resources were developed in partnership with the school of performance and media production at York St John University and are designed to be used with children and young people aged 11+.

The materials can form part of a school’s teaching for personal, social, health and economic education (PSHE) (England), personal development and mutual understanding (PDMU) (Northern Ireland), and personal and social education (PSE) (Wales and Scotland). The lesson plans can be adapted for use with other audiences and can be delivered in schools or community settings.

Using It's Not OK

Using It's Not OK resources

The films

There are four short films, one for each character – Becky, Mikey, Lee-Ann and Harry. The films should be watched in this order as they have interconnecting stories, though they work independently of each other.

Delivering It's Not OK

Each film and supporting activities can be delivered in 50 minutes to one hour. We recommend a minimum of four sessions to cover the whole resource.

  • Familiarise yourself with the film content before showing young people and be aware that the contents may act as a trigger for anyone who has been affected by issues raised in the films.
  • Before watching each film, ask young people to look out for any risks and concerns for that character.
  • The films work best when watched on a large screen in dark surroundings. 
  • Reiterate the message that the victim is never responsible or to blame for the abuse that they experience.
  • Ensure that everyone knows where they can seek support if they need to talk to someone about any issues raised in the films, or anything else.
  • We suggest that after an initial discussion with the whole group about the issues and concerns they have noted, split into smaller groups to engage in the learning activities.
Becky: healthy and unhealthy relationships

Becky: healthy and unhealthy relationships

Becky is 15-years-old and lives at home with younger brother Mikey, Mum and Mum's new boyfriend, Kevin.

Becky is bright and honest and is doing well at school. Her best friends are Lee-Ann and Harry and they have all been friends since early childhood. Becky has started to have romantic feelings for Harry.

Becky's parents had money pressures which ultimately led to the breakdown of their marriage. They separated a year ago and Dad now has a new partner. Becky's Mum is a nurse and recently, her new boyfriend moved in with them. Becky's Mum is having to work extra night shifts at the hospital as Kevin has lost his job. Becky is uneasy around Kevin who starts to show an unhealthy interest in her.

Watch: Becky's story

Download: Lesson plan

> Download Becky's story lesson plan (PDF)

Mikey: coping with emotions

Mikey: coping with emotions

Mikey is 13-years-old and lives at home with sister Becky, Mum and Mum's new boyfriend Kevin. Mikey likes school, especially when he can hang out with the older boys but he finds learning boring.

Mikey thinks Harry is his best friend and looks up to him. Mikey also fancies his sister’s best friend, Lee-Ann. Mikey thinks Mum’s new boyfriend, Kevin, is 'mint' as Kevin lets Mikey use his X-Box and play Grand Theft Auto on it.

As Mum is often out for work, Mikey increases the amount of time spent playing computer games and his sleep diminishes. Kevin brings Mikey's tea to his room and gives him money for winning games, encouraging Mikey to stay in his room and game more. Mikey starts to show signs of being influenced by the games (e.g. sexualised behaviour, feeling frustrated and angry) but doesn't know how to talk about the way he is feeling.

Watch: Mikey's story

Download: Lesson plan

> Download Mikey's story lesson plan (PDF)

Lee-Ann: e-safety

Lee-Ann: e-safety

Lee-Ann is 15-years-old but pretends to be older on social media. She lives with her Mum and Dad who are out of the house a lot due to work. Her best friend is Becky and she is also friends with Harry and Mikey.

Lee-Ann reveals details about herself through online images and meets Scott in a chatroom. Scott is older than Lee-Ann and he starts to send her gifts which he demands that she keep secret. Scott makes Lee-Ann feel grown up and she quickly starts to isolate herself from her friends.

He starts to take her to parties a long way from home where predominantly, all the guests are male. Lee-Ann feels uncomfortable at the parties but doesn’t want to disappoint Scott. Lee-Ann wishes that her parents were around more and spends some time with her neighbours, Jackie and Tom. 

The pressure from Scott increases during the film and by the end, Lee-Ann suggests that she knows what is going on is 'NOT OK' but feels too scared and trapped by the situation. 

Watch: Lee-Ann's story

Download: Lesson plan

> Download Lee-Ann's story lesson plan (PDF)

Harry: sexting

Harry: sexting

Harry is 15-years-old and lives with Mum, Dad and his twin baby siblings. He is fun and popular, has a happy home life and a good relationship with his parents. He has known Becky and Mikey from early childhood and has started to have romantic feelings towards Becky.

Harry regularly receives online images of girls sent from the boys at school. Harry becomes aware that Becky doesn’t feel comfortable with Kevin and Harry is threatened by Kevin, wanting him to stay away from Becky.

Harry starts to think that he should tell someone about the situation. Becky finds out that Harry is being sent 'nudes' of girls at the school and is upset by this. Harry begins to realise that the sexting isn't OK but is caught up in the school culture of social media, sexualised behaviour and sharing images. 

Watch: Harry's story

Download: Lesson plan

> Download Harry's story lesson plan (PDF) 

References and resources

References and resources

It's Not Ok lesson plans

Becky: healthy and unhealthy relationships lesson plan (PDF)

Mikey: coping with emotions lesson plan (PDF)

Lee-Ann: online safety lesson plan (PDF)

Harry: sexting lesson plan (PDF)

Complete lesson plans (PDF) 

Related online training

Keeping children safe online – online course

Managing sexualised behaviour in schools – online course

Further reading on NSPCC Learning

Protecting children from sexual exploitation

Protecting children from online abuse

Sexting: advice for professionals

E-safety for schools

Making sense of relationships - PSHE resources

Share Aware resources for schools and teachers