Thursday, April 14, 2011

Toys & Gender

This word cloud was made from listening to tv commercials for boy toys and girl toys. Can you guess which word cloud goes with which gender? Bet you can. The size of the word indicates how frequently it was used. The bigger the word, the more often it was used.
We often think that by buying boy toys for boys and girl toys for girls that we are just helping them "become normal" in a social sense. Watch this video about what is normal in advertising for children.

What do you think about the idea that there should be no advertising directed at children? Do you think that gendered toys and advertising change children's ideas about what is possible for them professionally? Check out this article about the effect of gendered toys on children's education:
Playing Fair?
Do you think it's possible that the lack of technology, science, and building-based toys effects how girls perform in school? Do you think that boy's toys limit their potential? What would happen if the messages sent to boys and girls via toys and advertising were mixed up? Find out by playing this game:
Gendered Advertising Remixer
What is your intuitive response to mixing up these advertisements? Do you find them ridiculous or enlightening?
As a comment below, write TWO paragraphs about what you think about gendered toys. This comment is DUE at the start time of your next class with me. Please make sure to include your name as it appears on the roll.


  1. I think that it should matter , because it may affect many children life when they get older.Also the thing's that kids are playing with may make them act different such as being soft as a boy or act like a boy as a girl. But as we know it does not matter to them because they sre kids but we as older parent's or other should guide them the right way of what their gender is.

  2. What I think about gendered toys, I believe that the toys limit the females to a certain extent. The girls are taught to bake, cook, clean, to nurture and take care of babies. They are not taught to build, construct, or the initiative to take control over something. They play with sparkly glittery toys.

    I believe the boys are taught violence competition, control, power, to conquer, and to be commanding. Boys are taught to build and construct things. They are taught to fight, to be aggressive, and other things. I don't think they should advertise directed at children because it limit the females on what they can do and it poison the male mind.

  3. Personally I think toys can be used by any gender. On the box it does not say "For boys only" or "For girls only", it just has an age limit. With advertising the toys I think they should not stop because it lets the kids know which games are coming out.

    It is up to the paernt on whether they want their kids playing with a certain toy. Just because a boy plays with a girl toy does not mean that he will be gay later on in life and the same apply to the girl. I think in order for someone to be gay it has to be on their mind and not by what toy they play with. Whatever a boy can do a girl can do also becuase if not we would not have female law enforcement or women in the military.

  4. I think that gender toys are affective in younger kids. Kids are like a sponge they take and remember everything at that young age ,which molds and makes their personality. So gender toys help them know what to look forward to as they grow older. I also believe to a certain extent that it really doesnt matter what type of toy they play with.

    Its up up to the parent to chose which toys to buy for their child. I feel as if that toy makers should broaden the kinds of toys for girls though because in todays society a house wife is not going to cut it. Then the boy should have something different besides guns and weapons.

  5. I think that toys are gender specific and that they should be as advertised. I don't think that the way toys are advertised affects their future. Children will probably forget what affect an actual toy had on them. What matters most is what their parent teaches them.

    When I was younger I had barbie doll and a ken doll. If my mother would see my little brother playing with a barbie she would take it from him and give him a ken doll. The way children think depends on the parent and what they enforce in their child's mind.

  6. I feel that children dont really know anything bout which toy is for him or her. Older people put these things in their head to separate boys and girls things. But I also feel somethings are made exactly for girls/boys.

    Some of the toys for girls that deals with cooking, cleaning, and take care of kids are made for girls to play with but also it can be helpful to a man where he dosent have to depends on a woman because he learns that he may need these things in the future but he dosent really have to play with them. But it dosent mean its going make them different in the future, because they dont really understand.

  7. I think toys dosent effect the child's personality.It depends on how their parents raised them and/or their environment surrondings will effect a person's personality. I think any toy can be use by any gender.

    I have siblings that are males that played with barbies toys and females that played with GI Joe action figures. It dosent mean that the person will become homosexual but more educated about other things.

  8. I feel that toys should not be gengered. It is one thing to have a boy and a girl toy, but another thing to say that a boy can not play with a certain toy because it is supposed to be for a girl, or a girl can not play with a toy because its for boys.

    Any toy can be for any gender. It all depends on what that child likes. Playing with toys that are supposed to be for the other gender does not mean that girl or boy will turn out gay. It might even give insite to that child on what different girls and boys like to do.

  9. I believe that gender based toys do have an effect on the way a child develops from an adolescent to adult hood. If a child is only exposed to one type of toy, setting, environment, etc. then that is what the child will believe is only except able in society.

    If a boy is only exposed to toys that only represent construction, farming, or race cars then the child will eventually begin to believe that hard labor is the only acceptable lifestyle in the real world, and if a girl is only exposed to the lifestyle of glamor, makeup, and fashion all her life then she will believe that lifestyle is the only one for her. I believe that the way the media displays toys for boys and girls limits their potential because they are only exposed to one or few types of environments, settings, etc.

  10. I believe genered based toys dont really effect how a kid develops.I think what the kid sees and hear from his family and friend effects a kid more.
    i think the comercials for guns and truck toys are loud and explosive becase they have to get to gets boys attention. So they will buy the product. That doesn't mean they cant grow up to be caring and nice poeple.I thinknk the girl commercials are dabout dolls and cooking cause girls like that stuff since they see there mothers doing it. They dont want to see hammers and stuff that young.