Curriculum Materials

There are limited curriculum materials available for the topic of teen dating violence. And there is no one comprehensive curriculum that covers all the subtopics. Therefore it is necessary to utilize various materials as we teach this topic. The following is a list of curriculum materials that have been used with success by health teachers.

Safe Dates, An Adolescent Dating Abuse Prevention Curriculum

Hazelden Publishing


This curriculum is research based and considered a Model Program by the National Registry of Effective Programs and it is on the list of Exemplary & Promising Programs of Samhsa, Substance Abuse & Mental Health Administration. It is an excellent curriculum.

It is 9 sessions long. In our school district in Rhode Island, we teach the first three sessions in eighth grade and the remainder of the sessions in grade nine.

Expect Respect This program consists of 3 parts: SUPPPORT GROUP MANUAL (24 week curriculum for youth victims who have experienced domestic violence, sexual abuse, or abusive dating relationships). This is an excellent curriculum for a support group which should be run by a school mental health professional or community agency mental health professional (social workers, psychologists, guidance). In also includes a YOUTH LEADERSHIP TRAINING MANUAL, including the SafeTeens curriculum and culminating with a student-led awareness project in the school or community. This group could be run by educators. And lastly, it includes a MANUAL OF SCHOOL-WIDE PREVENTION STRATEGIES to engage the entire school community. This is a research-based program. Great for schools who want to include intervention for victims …..truly a must for all schools.

Domestic Violence 101 and Ending Violence

Break the Cycle

Ending Violence curriculum may be purchased separately or as part of a larger package “Respect Works”, which includes SafeDates and other tools. Available through

Love Is Not Abuse Curriculum – free.  Available through website

Katie Brown Education Program

Teaches dating violence units in schools; may request a donation; evidence-based curriculum. Has developed a wonderful hands-on activity-based and teacher friendly curriculum for grades 5-high school; curriculum and training is available for school teachers. The units for grades 5, 6 & 7 are terrific. Covers bullying too.

Coaching Boys Into Men

Download free kit & materials to help young athletes build respectful, non-violent relationships

Sexual Harassment

Sexual harassment may occur in an abusive dating relationship. But not all cases of sexual harassment are dating violence, as they may occur outside of a dating relationship. Whenever sexual harassment occurs at school, if it is not dealt with properly by the school, the school may be held liable under Title IX. It is important to teach students about sexual harassment, but the teacher must make it clear, when this occurs within a dating relationship, it is known as dating violence. The following curricula may be used to teach about sexual harassment, but ARE NOT A SUBSTITUTE FOR USING DATING VIOLENCE CURRICULA, AS NOTED ABOVE.

Sexual Harassment, Pick & Choose Activities for Grades 7-12

by Betty Hubbard, Ed.D.

Published by ETR Associates

Contains good lesson plans for sexual harassment, but also has a few good lesson plans on gender stereotypes and the media. I usually teach this unit before teaching dating violence to my eigth grade health classes.

Sexual Harassment & Teens by Susan Strauss

Flirting vs Hurting: A Teachers Guide on Student to Student Sexual Harassment in Schools

by Nan Stein Straight-forward DVD, can be 2-3 lessons and best if taught before dating violence unit. Can use in grade 8 and higher.

Your local Coalition Against Domestic Violence will probably have lesson plans or units on dating violence that they might share with you. Many also will provide dating violence lessons at your school.

Katie Brown Education Program

Teaches dating violence units in schools; may request a donation

Has developed a wonderful hands-on activity-based and teacher friendly curriculum for grades 5-9; curriculum and training is available for school teachers. The units for grades 5, 6 & 7 are terrific.

Day One, Rhode Island Sexual Assault and Trauma Resource Center

Provides education in schools; offers free one day overview, there is a fee for subsequent lessons


Found on websites:

Love Is Respect National Teen Dating Abuse Helpline

Michigan 3 lesson plan unit

Search “dating violence lesson plans” then follow the links for “Dating Violence Education Package”

Gender Stereotypes Lesson Plans – search lesson plans “gender representation” & “stereotyping

In addition to the above website materials, the websites listed in the teacher links have a wealth of materials including brochures, handouts, poetry, victim stories, etc.


Breathing Underwater

By Alex Flinn

HarperCollins Publishers, Inc.

Excerpts from Breathing Underwater are used in the Liz Claiborne curriculum. In our school district, this book is mandatory summer reading for all ninth graders. If this book is then discussed in English class, it is advisable for English teachers to be trained in the topic of dating violence. It also can be used in Advisory, read by teacher who is trained in tdv topic and discussed.


By Sarah Dessen, fiction.

Leslie’s Journal

By Allan Stratton Annick Press Go to for lesson plan that accompanies the book.

Tornado Warning

By Elin Stebbins Waldal Sound Beach Publishing A must read for all, high school and up. Personal story of tdv at age 17. Very well written.

Things Change

By Patrick Jones (librarian) Realistic fiction for high school.

Bitter End

By Jennifer Brown, fiction.

Breaking Beautiful

By Jennifer Shaw Wolf, fiction.

Gift of Fear

By Gavin DeBecker

This book can be used as a resource tool for teachers, and Chapters 1 and 4 (ex Parking Lot Scenario and Girl on a Plane) could be used when teaching about victimization. It is not advisable for students to read this book.

When Dating Becomes Dangerous: A Parent’s Guide to Preventing Relationship Abuse

By Barrie Levy and Patricia Occhiuzzo Giggans, 2013, A must-read book for all parents, especially those whose teen is in an abusive relationship.

In Love and In Danger, A Teen’s Guide to Breaking Free of Abusive Relationships

By Barrie Levy, MSW. Excellent book


Break the Silence CDC produced video for parents on dating violence go to:

Dating for Real: Building Safe & Healthy Relationships

Series of 3 videos, can be purchased as a set or individually through Human Relations Media also has a series of student pamphlets on dating/domestic violence; dating safely, date rape


Great set of posters: Unhealthy Relationships cost $49.95 for 6 laminated posters Health and Drug Education, Culver City, CA 1-800-421-4246


According to You by Orianthia

My Life Would Suck Without You by Kelly Clarkson……check out the video

Under My Thumb by the Rolling Stones

Every Breath You Take by the Police

Refugee by Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers

White Horse by Taylor Swift…..good video, she says “No” in the end & breaks up