Allowing Gender Fluid Children to Participate in Our Early Childhood Spaces
Children are not born knowing what gender they are. They adopt gender stereotypes as a result of what they see and experience from other children, adults, and the media. Early childhood is a critical time for children to create their own identities, and providing safe settings for children to express their identities is critical to allowing them to flourish and grow. This post looks at a few basic ways educators and parents may establish welcoming environments for gender fluid children, such as building a diverse classroom, using supportive language, and giving a variety of books and toys.
Inquire about your children’s preferred pronouns, and use gender-neutral language whenever possible. Simply say “everyone” instead of “boys and girls.” Instead of “he” or “she,” use “they” as frequently as possible. If a youngster indicates a preference for a specific pronoun, even if it is not the one assigned to them at birth, respect their wishes. Take note of how the children are playing and engaging with one another. For example, if you hear a young boy declare, “Pink is for girls!” you can calmly respond, “A lot many boys adore pink, too!”
The classroom or playing area
Creating a welcoming classroom or play place is an easy method to promote children’s developing gender identification. This article discusses the significance of not categorizing children based on gender. Do not form boys vs. girls teams, segregate “girls’ toys” from “boys’ toys,” or assign traditional gender colors to children (for instance, having blue mats be for boys and pink mats are for girls). Encourage children to play with children of all genders and with a variety of toys. Make your play area or classroom a safe, welcoming environment where children may utilize their imaginations and play freely without regard for gender.
Books and toys
Choose a choice of toys that will allow all children to express their gender identities while also being informative. When feasible, use gender-neutral books and toys and provide lots of “boy” and “girl” things. The aim is to make toys accessible to all children and encourage them to play with a variety of toys. You could even set up a rotation system so that each child can play with all of the toys, and each child gets to interact with toys and books that they might not think to explore on their own.
This article describes how, in the past, parents and educators pushed children to play with toys that mirrored appropriate vocations for their gender, such as playing home for females and fire trucks for guys. The modern workforce does not reflect these gender preconceptions, and it is critical to teach children that they may be whatever and anything they choose to be, regardless of gender.
Educators have a responsibility to respect learners’ gender identities and the chance to encourage this discovery. Creating a welcoming atmosphere for gender fluid children includes creating an inclusive classroom or play space, using supportive language, and providing and promoting the use of a variety of toys and literature.