Social learning theory (SLT) suggests that behaviour is learnt through observation and imitation of “models”. SLT explains gender role by saying children learn their gender role primarily through vicarious reinforcement. Children are positively reinforced for behaving in gender-appropriate ways (i.e. a girl playing with a doll) and are punished for behaving in gender-inappropriate ways (i.e. a boy playing with a doll).
The way children are spoken to, played with, touched, etc. I think the expectations from society influence the way parents raise their children. Growing up, children are completely stereotyped. For example, boys are thought to mostly play with toy trucks/cars, action figures, and tools and girls are thought to mostly play with Barbie dolls, makeup, and kitchen sets. Mainly because that stereotypical societal behavior is encouraged through advertisements on a daily basis.
Gender roles are the behaviours that society teach us as appropriate for boys and girls. These are based on gender stereotypes, which are “assumptions made about the characteristics of each gender, such as physical appearance, physical abilities, attitudes, interests or occupations.” (Gooden and Gooden, 2001). This essay will define and discuss gender and its significance throughout early childhood. Gender socialisation will be related to throughout this discussion as the effects of the family, the school, the media and the peer group on gender socialisation will also be looked at. To conclude the essay, statistics and studies will be discussed with relation to gender role socialisation.
Things such as; how genders start to realize if they are boys or girls by the age of two and growing up and going through gender schemas. Which they learn by socializing with other kids that are their gender or the opposite gender. The toys could be played anywhere like in the car, play rooms, outside, schools and playgrounds. Depending on how versatile the toy is, it could pretty much be played anywhere unless of course it is a tree fort, swing set or a power
The second stage of Kolhberg’s model is the gender stability stage. This happens around the age of four. In this stage children recognise that their own gender is fixed across time but not the gender of others. However, in this stage children still rely heavily on outward appearance to label gender, furthermore, at this stage the children still have no perception that gender is fixed across situations so if a child saw a man wearing a dress then that child would automatically assume that he is a girl because he is engaging in feminine activities. The research of Slaby and Frey is supportive of the gender stability stage.
Parents also give their children gender-specific toys. Common toys for boys are action figures, toy cars, and balls. Girls are frequently given dolls, tea sets, and stuffed animals. Even how children are treated is based on the child’s sex. Mothers are often stern with their daughters and easy on their sons.
Can parts of gender stereotype be biological? Can we link this to how children develop the ability to communicate and how they use it at a young age? There are many researchers discussing whether language acquisition between men and women are indeed different and many believe that its caused by gender bias among our society. The general concept is that we are not born with gender, but that gender is something we perform or learn to do. However, there is evidence to show that even at a young age, boys and girls that learn how to communicate, will learn at different speeds and will struggle with different aspects of learning how to communicate.
Kohlberg related many of these ideas to gender development. Kohlberg believed that children actively structure their own experiences, rather than passive learning through observing and imitating. According to his theory, children acquire understanding of gender in three stages. The first stage is gender labelling (2-3.5 years). At this stage children label themselves and others as girl or boy, but this is based only on outward appearance.
While boys are encouraged to be adventurous and granted freedom that is perhaps undeserved, their female counterparts will be given toy ovens and princess dolls to play with. Well meaning adults will often correct or shame a child who exhibits behaviors that are not suitable for the gender roles Ornelas 2 they are being raised to fill. Though parents and relatives mean no harm by introducing children to the societal constructs of behavior befitting their gender, these practices directly harm the child.
I think it is based off of the upbringing of the child. The toys determine to be appropriate might affect a child’s movement. For instance, a boy who plays with Barbie dolls would attract other female children and start developing female characteristics. Also, playing with Barbie dolls may have the potential to cause that child’s interest to be altered. Clothing plays a major role in your life.