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'We need to give young children the freedom to step out of their pink and blue boxes'

Teachers have taken to Twitter to highlight the importance of breaking down gender stereotyping in early years

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Teachers have taken to Twitter to highlight the importance of breaking down gender stereotyping in early years

Early years teachers are the first guiding hand a child has in education. They’re in the unique, and rather special, position to witness children as they first begin to understand who they are.

Part of that development includes choice: choosing what to play with, how to dress and what colour to favour on any particular day. 

In this area, gender stereotyping remains a powerful influence – a recent study revealed it begins as early as 4. Just 20 per cent of four- to six-year-old girls surveyed chose a pilot as a potential profession, while only 37 per cent of boys chose cabin crew.

The influence of stereotyping

Early years teachers took to Twitter last night to discuss the impact of the gender divide, and share their classroom experiences. 


@EarlyYearsIdeas yes at 3 my son is saying 'that's for girls# but how much is ingrained and how much learnt? #EYshare

— J & E Learning (@Dawnhansford) February 15, 2017


@Dawnhansford I've seen teachers give girls certain tasks and boys others. E.g. asking boys to help move a table #EYshare

— Early Years Ideas (@EarlyYearsIdeas) February 15, 2017


We'd say it's just as simple as thinking of children as #morealikethandifferent & giving freedom to step out of pink/blue boxes #EYshare

— Let Toys Be Toys (@LetToysBeToys) February 15, 2017



@mr_hampshire my daughter does underwater rugby... & fencing... its fun when children break boundaries w-out even reflecting on it #EYshare

— Suzanne Axelsson (@SuzanneAxelsson) February 16, 2017


I will never forget a little boy sat in a cinderella outfit looking up at me saying I'm going to be in the army. 8 years on he is! #eyshare

— Mr Hampshire (@mr_hampshire) February 15, 2017


@EarlyYearsIdeas @EYFS_K exactly I think choosing books that challenge stereotypes. Images of female firefighters, male nurses etc #EYshare

— E.Y Inspiration (@ey_inspiration1) February 15, 2017


@Dawnhansford @EarlyYearsIdeas Yes, the dressing up boxes are my bug bare at times, theres so few gender neutral outfits! #EYshare

— Katie-Rebecca (@Katrebel1) February 15, 2017


@Katrebel1 I had a doll (called Andrew) when I was 2/3 yr/old! Loved pushing him around in my pushchair! Loved FIMO when bit older #eyshare

— Richard Holme (@richardjholme) February 15, 2017



@LetToysBeToys I vividly remember as a child being told that my fav colour couldn't be red because that is a BOY'S colour! #EYshare

— Early Years Ideas (@EarlyYearsIdeas) February 15, 2017



@EarlyYearsIdeas I always wanted to do dancing in PE in High School but told the boys wouldn't join in.. Tell Louis Spence that pls #Eyshare

— Katie-Rebecca (@Katrebel1) February 15, 2017


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