Gender Socialization Of Children : Gendered Toys, Media, And Parental Affects Child Development

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Gender role expectations are inescapable in our society as we naturally tend to sort humans into categories, the easiest one being gender. Upon first meeting a person, most people automatically classify the other’s gender. With this classification come the inevitable gender role expectations. Even for those who consciously try their hardest not to cloud their perceptions of others based on “traditional” gender role expectations, it is almost impossible not to subconsciously succumb to these expectations that are ingrained in our minds virtually since the day we are born. These expectations often influence how one interacts with another. This is especially important when taking into consideration the effects that gender socialization of children through gendered toys, media, and parental affects child development.

Once a child is born, he or she learns to view the world based on the behaviors of others. The child’s primary caregivers, usually the parents, and others present in the child’s environment, such as siblings, peers, teachers, and even the media, contribute to the development of the child’s perception of himself, those around him, and society overall. This concept is called socialization. “The way we are, behave and think is the final product of socialization” and it is through socialization that we “learn what is appropriate and improper for both genders” (Crespi, 2004). This concept of gender socialization leads to the inescapable
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