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I have witnessed gender stereotyping in a classroom I briefly subbed in. I saw a child interested in what can often be considered ‘girly’ stationery- pencil cases, lunch boxes, bags etc.. While in younger classes it wasn’t an issue for him, he soon became self-conscious and asked his parents could he have more neutral colours for school, and he’d keep his favourite more ‘girly’ stationery for home use. I questioned previous staff/ parents on this particular scenario wondering had something been said by children or others and was assured there was no single incident that led to this change. However, It has to be questioned what gender stereotyping is being allowed and reinforced to happen at a school and classroom level, maybe sometimes without our knowledge.
Methodologies that I would hope to implement into my future classroom:
Awareness: age- appropriate discussion, encourage critical thinking and examine societal expectations with children.
Diverse role-models: Introduce potential role-models who defy gender stereotypes whereby their interests and abilities are not limited by gender.
Provide Choice: offer options that cater to various preferences without reinforcing stereotypes.
Inclusive literacy: This has been highlighted more and more on social media, the importance of having a diverse library of books. I think we can stretch this to include books that challenge stereotypes and promote inclusivity.