Steve Bowler tweeted a photo of an assignment that his 8-year-old daughter’s teacher said she did incorrectly. The homework assignment had a list of toys or activities, and the kids were supposed to categorize them based on whether they were for boys, girls, or both, with equal numbers in each box. The assignment takes for granted the gendering of toys, and that there is a “correct” answer to the question of which gender they are appropriate for.
Bowler’s daughter did the assignment differently. After placing 3 items in the “boys” category and 2 in the “girls” group, she made additional boxes to add more things in the “both” column.
But at the bottom, the teacher notes that the assignment wasn’t done correctly. The point of the assignment is to categorize; the implicit message — that boys and girls are different types of people who like different types of things — isn’t questioned. A child sees this list of items and doesn’t gender them in the way the lesson took for granted; the reaction wasn’t to acknowledge her innovation and perhaps question the gendering, it was simply to say she did it wrong.
Bowler, for the record, said he was proud his daughter failed the assignment and just wished she’d done even worse on it.
via sociological images
[some gender-related bullshit removed.]
I’d be at the school having a giant argument with the teacher.