Faculty Scholarly Dissemination Grants


Issues and Recommendations in Teaching Young Gender Different Children


Leadership and Learning


College of Education

Date Range





Because we live in a world organized in terms of male and female, it is difficult for children to safely explore non-conforming gender identities. As early as the age of 2, sometimes earlier, some children may disagree with their biological gender assignment. Gender non-conforming children may express behaviors that challenge traditional gender roles. These behaviors may be expressed by boys who are interested in feminine things, who have preferences which are typically considered feminine behaviors, gestures, clothing choices, friend preferences, etc. Girls who are gender non-conforming may express behaviors that are traditionally considered masculine with preference and interested I masculine play, behaviors, dress, etc. The role of the early childhood teacher is to help gender non-conforming children discover and become their truest selves, to offer safe places in which to explore their gender identity, and assurance that whatever they do and whoever they become will be respected and loved. This presentation provides 25 recommendations that the classroom teacher and parent may use in supporting gender variant children

Conference Name

Global Summit on Childhood

Conference Location

Vancouver, Canada

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