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Changing pads regularly

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This lesson supports curriculum codes:

  • ABLEWA Stage B (VCHPEP020)
  • ABLEWA Stage C (VCHPEP032; VCHPEP034)
  • ABLEWA Stage D (VCHPEP046; VCHPEP048)
  • Year 6 (ACPPS052)


This lesson aims to develop awareness of when a pad needs to be changed.

Foundation Knowledge for this lesson includes differentiation of male and female bodies; awareness of age and body differences between babies, children, adolescents, and adults; receptive identification of vagina; public and private body parts; receptive identification of sanitary pads, bin, toilet, and underpants; receptive identification of blood.

Generalisation ideas

  • Role play ideas:  use red food dye and pads to show when it is an appropriate time to change a pad.  
  • Visual cues:  use visual cues throughout the day at opportune moments to go to the toilet to check pads.
  • Other sanitary options:  There are many choices for managing periods such as period underwear, tampons, and menstrual cups.  Processes for checking and changing may differ with different products.
  • Social stories: create a personalised social story reflecting the frequency of pad changing across a period for an individual.  
  • Consequences:  how does it feel to wear a fresh pad?  what should you do if you feel like you need to change a pad but it’s not a break time at school? 
  • Flipsides:  what happens if you don’t change your pad on a heavy period day?  How does it feel to wear a soiled pad?
  • Who can you talk to?:  create a list of at least two people in each setting (e.g. school, home) the student can go to if they need help with changing pads.

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