How Gender Discrimination Effects Children

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Updated: May 16, 2022
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“It is during their first years that girls and boys learn gendered attitudes and expectations – from parents, caregivers, other family members, and teachers – about how girls and boys/women and men should behave, their social worth and what their role is in society.” (e.g. Plan International) Gender inequality is an issue for all of us, but we often don’t think about how it affects children. In recent decades, there have been elaborate studies on how sexism and gender stereotyping has a negative impact on children.

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Gender bias in children is an issue because it leads young kids to feel that they cannot express themselves, accomplish their goals, or disprove stereotypes.

When we are young, often times we are taught the “dolls are for girls, trucks are for boys” mentality. It implies that we shouldn’t like, do, or say certain things just because of our gender. In our current times, we must stop this generational teaching of inequality. People everywhere are working incredibly hard to end these stereotypes, and if children from just one generation are taught that all genders are equal, inequality will be almost nonexistent within a few decades! Children are inevitably going to be discriminated against due to their gender in school, sports, education, and life, but it is our responsibility to change this.

Gender inequality is a crucial cause of children’s early childhood development.  In many communities, gender inequality is one important root cause of children’s poor development in the early years. Gender discrimination is to blame for the finite sovereignty and the refusal of rights to health care and corporeal integrity: when infants and kids endure deficient cognitive and somatic health, it negatively influences children’s survival, growth, and development. Although this is not as common in the United States, it is certainly still an issue. Children and parents should not have to worry about whether or not they will have access to basic human rights.

Studies show that children as young as a few months old are exposed to sexism and discrimination. Even if they cannot comprehend it, they are constantly learning. If babies are in an environment with immense inequality, it will severely impact their views on life. The cognitive fabrication of gender schema is essential, but perspective, ethics, and effective covalence attached to gender awareness are also a critical piece of the information from which children build their gender views. As part of an analysis of opinion on schooling, children in their first year of middle school were given thorough interviews about their exposure to discrimination at school. From these interviews appeared some distinctly and invariably held beliefs about professors’ and students’ attitudes towards genderized discrimination. While students didn’t believe that the problems were of the highest importance, and did not endure severe forms of discrimination, they were all worried about the ‘unfair’ treatment. Both males and females felt that the others were treated unfairly. Although, the children also felt that certain types of discrimination were unavoidable, given the reputation of genderized behavior.

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How Gender Discrimination Effects Children. (2019, May 21). Retrieved from