Gender Segregation In Early Childhood

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In early childhood it is apparent that children tend to play with other children of the same gender, more so than the opposite sex. Studies indicate that by three years of age, children begin showing preference in playing with children of the same gender, a phenomenon described as gender segregation (Fouts, Hallam, & Purandare, 2013). Some researchers have suggested that gender segregation occurs universally and have identified it as a result of early socialization through play, which leads to the gender segregated social outlook (Fouts et al., 2013). The purpose of this paper is to explore reasons why children’s playmates are the same sex and provide evidence supporting gender difference in play.
According to Maccoby (1998) in the initial two years of life children do not spend much time with children who are their own age. Their social context is largely decided for them by their parents and comprises primarily of grown-ups who take care of them and educate
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There was no clear tendency found in terms of gender segregation in toddler play groups. However, when toddlers engaged in same sex play groups, they appeared to be more socially interactive (Fouts et al., 2013). These three studies have provided evidence of gender differences in play. In conclusion, research has showed that children begin to develop a preference in playing with children of the same gender as early as the age of three, a phenomenon called gender segregation. Though there have been instances where this was not apparent or where both sexes were able to play together, the end result also seemed the same, with the children showing a preference for same sex playmates. Research has also explained the reasons why children prefer to play with children their same gender and has provided evidence of gender differences in
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