There is still a lot to be done for Gender Equality. Children can be very vulnerable to sexism and gender stereotyping from a very young age. There are a lot of places that can affect the child’s upbringing such as schools, playgrounds, homes, etc. Hence, parents must ensure a healthy environment around the child at home.
Here’s what you can do to help them fight gender stereotypes.
Avoid Gender Marketing
Have you ever noticed bright blue and cars in one aisle of the store and dolls and makeup toys in the other? Or have you seen blue and sports graphic t-shirts on one side and pastel and sparkle frocks on the other? There are several children's clothes and toys in the market which are divided by gender. Kids should always have an opportunity to select any kind of clothes and toys they want. A variety of options provides an all-around development, diversity, and empathy to them. Gender-biased products in the market tend to limit the child. Encourage them to go through the options themselves and choose what they want.
Use A Gender-Neutral Language
Language becomes a crucial tool when dealing with kids because what you tell them, stays with them. Use language that is inclusive of all gender types. Instead of Mom and Dad, prefer using ‘parents’ or ‘caregivers’. Encourage them to read more books and other media that are diverse and inclusive of all genders.
Encourage Mixed-Gender Meets
Studies have shown children who have close friendships with kids of other genders, tend to have a positive and non-sexist mind in life. Despite the negative social structure of society, parents should create opportunities for kids to meet and play with kids of other genders. This helps them to celebrate their differences too.
Be A Role Model
Education begins at home. At the end of the day, parents are the first model that a child looks up to every day. Adults can limit any of their behaviours that are harmful and sexist towards each other. Sharing responsibilities and daily tasks among the parents in a household is always a good way to start.
Chores And Activities Have No Gender
Encouraging children to take part in different activities is always a good idea. Chores and activities are never related to one gender. A child should feel safe and happy to do anything he likes.
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It is always good when parents talk about these issues with their kids. Parents and the child should have clear communication about any gender-related issue occurring in school or playgrounds with friends. This will ensure the kid grows in a healthy and free of gender bias environment.