Reply To: Module 2 – Gender

Niamh Flannery

I teach in a school that was originally an all girls school. They now have boys and girls mixed from Junior Infants to 1st class. I taught Junior Infants last year. It is very clear to see gender stereotypes affecting children from such a young age. An example of when it is extremely evident is during Aistear. I worked very hard with the boys in particular, to adapt to various role play set ups. Some boys were very reluctant to engage with the Home corner where there were dolls and other toys typically associated with girls. Constant modelling and support to children on how to play with various toys that they are not used of seeing can really help to challenge gender stereotypes in the younger classes. Drama is another example of where it can be challenging. We are very lucky to have a Drama teacher who puts on a Christmas show with the infants. She encourages the boys and the girls to play the parts of female and male characters. This also helps to challenge gender stereotypes.

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