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?
THE ASSIGNMENT
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.

22 comments:

  1. DeClouette, KevinApril 17, 2011 at 6:06 PM

    The video about children's toy advertising was interesting. When I watched it, I gained great insight on how companies advertise toys for boys and girls. It seems they use various strategies and schemes to get kids to buy these toys. My opinion on these advertisements is that the advertisements portray bad gender stereotypes. I think that companies can advertise for kids but they should avoid gender stereotypes. Boys are portrayed as being in a hands on role such as building things while girl advertisements have them wearing purple and people nursing a baby. This fits that mother role women in society are portrayed to have today. It does not show girls that they can be more than that mother role, there isn't an effort to show them they can be that business woman or that builder like the boy advertisements show.

    I think that the girls are not allowed to boost their potential in school or work opportunities if they see that their role is being a mother like figure or a nurturer. Boys can't be that doctor or that counselor if the ads want them to be a builder or construction worker. In the end, it is ridiculous for these advertisements to portray girls and boys in roles society wants them to have. Companies should advertise on toys that promote a mixture of attributes for girls and boys in their toys.

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  2. Toys are always being gendered on commercials. I beleive gendering toys is wrong and shouln't be done. I beleive a child should be able to play with any toy that they heart desire to play with. All children are not intrested in the same things. Therefore all kids will not like the same toys other kids like.
    Some people believe that if a boy plays with a toy that the media portray to be a girl toy,the child will turn out gay. This information to me is false accusatons. I believe if the parents of their child raise their child and tell him what a little boy or little girl should do and should not do, the child will turn out to be perfectly fine. Gendering toys is ignorant. A child should not have to be a specific gender to play with a toy. No matter what kind of toy a child plays with, if the child is happy, everyone else should be to.


    Destini Babineaux

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  3. After reading the articles and watching the documentary I can state that since the conception of children's toys the existence of gender roles has been prominent. Do we have to stop the advertisements directed at children? No we don't have to but we can try to make more toys that allow the children to be open-minded. At the begin of the world they always showed boys to rule, to conquer, and to build; and for the girls to stay at home and to take care of the children and house-shores.
    In the commercials they teach boys to be powerful, competitive, in command and conqueror. there is no commercials of boy nurturing or caring, whereas girls are meant to play with sparkly toys and dolls. The girls toys are based on homemaking, popularity and obsession with beauty; they don't encourage them to be creative or to take control of their environment. The messages are really manipulative and marketing for the same product is different for boys and girls; that is why we tried to mix up these advertisements for boys and girls and turns up to be really entertaining and enlightening. Enlightening because you see that dolls can't match with a killing people or carrying a gun. so we have to change our way to advertise and leading the children to evolve with the proper toys.

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  4. Odschane Lamark

    After watching this commercial there were some interesting opinions.I do agree with the advertising business. But advertising could be harmful because sometimes it sends the wrong message just to sell a product. Some toys are directed at a sex of a child. Sometimes commercials make kids think that its ok to encourage masculity issues and how to be sexsess.Boys are taught not to play with pink toys.How to be in controll, rip, beat, and shoot stuff. Harmful aspects of commercials.

    The commercial was enlightening.I dont think the commercial is just the pproblem. When ure a new born baby parents buy blue if its a boy and pink if its a girl ure taught that there is a such thing as being girly or masculint like a boy. Typically we are taught boys are strong and play with guns and ruff stuff, not baby dolls. And girls play with barbies and wear pink.Its just a way of expression but kids sometimes grow out of it and find their own way and some kids don't thats the problem.Advertising is manipulative is a overall problem, it creates mental problems for kids. So i don't think ads should target kids. It should stop and let kids find their own.

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  5. These articles and videos made me think a lot about the idea of gendering toys. Advertisement of toys that are specified to be for a certain gender is stereotypical. The image the commercials present is wrong for a kid. The advertisements portrays little boys as being a hands on person, leaders,aggressive,and being physical. Girls are portrayed to be well groomers, having house skills, and nurturing skills. These advertisements can limit a childs mind, when thinking about what they would like to become when they grow up. These advertisements make a child want to be just like what is portrayed in the media.
    Gendering roles can make a child feel that the only role they can play when they grow up is what portrayed by the media. It can do damage by misleading a child thinking that they have limits to what they want to become in the future. I believe a child should be able to play with any toy that they heart desire to play with. All children are not interested in the same things, therefore all kids will not like the same toys other kids like. A child should not have to be a specific gender to play with a toy. No matter what kind of toy a child plays with, if the child is happy, everyone else should be to.

    Destini Babineaux (Redo Copy)

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  6. Idakwoji, Mary.

    Gendered Toys.

    The video and articles shows how companies that manufactures toys, advertised what is normal for children. These toys companies are gender conscious. Therefore, they develop and market their toys to these trends. The idea that, there should be no advertising directed at children will make a great deal. This will enable parents to control their children, and provide suitable toys for them. I don't think gendered toys can change children's ideas about what is possible for them professionally. Because, as kids, they can not really determine what to be in the future.

    Toys stimulate creativity in both boys and girls, and help develop hand eye co-ordination and motore skills, color recognition, patience and self esteem. If the messages sent to boys and girls via toys and advertising were mixed up, they will not be limited to certain roles. Gendered toys portrays boys as having control, power, conquering and commanding. On the other hand, it portrays girls for child rearing, domestic work, popularity and beauty over intelligence. I think toys only opens up the world around children, by exposing them to a wide range of play experience.

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  7. Delwin R. Williams

    The article Playing Fair was good; though the argument engendered how toys affect the learning of children at an early age. Both are portrayed in the articles, videos, and my personal experience tends to differ on several aspects. As a child growing up, there were boy toys and girl toys. Boys had their comic books, cars, footballs, and games while girls had their dolls, princess crowns, and mother’s make –up kit. I think that the commercials are creative and suitable for each gender. However, for the boys, some of these commercials display that they have to be competitive, powerful, conquering, and controlling. These behaviors shouldn't be shown to children at this age. Most of the girls knew as much about comics and cars as did the boys. Also, girls took part in boyish activities like climbing trees, playing cops, and other seemingly masculine activities. In addition, most families allowed their kids to have fun engaging in any suitable game played rather its masculine or feminine. As a matter of fact, the girls, in my family, wore jeans, climbed trees, raced, and played sports and other such activities with the boys. Women in my family love mowing the lawn, fixing car tires, etc. The boys also dressed themselves sometimes in girl clothes just to be comical but those actually turned out to be a homosexual. Just as the mean like to cook and clean.


    The idea of eliminating the communication for children is strongly justified because parents should be responsible for the education of their kids. Education does not only begin and end in the class room, but it extends to everyday learning; how to walk, not to play with fire, playing games, and so on. In my opinion, boy toys influence their potential, because it shows them how to put things together and master how they work. I would say that the lack of technology, science, and building-base for toys effect how girls perform in school. From playing this game if by way of toys and advertising were mixed up, then boys and girls would gain what they are lacking from each gender. I think that more of these mixed advertisements should be played. I find these advertisements helpful.

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  8. Te'Yonte' Tillman
    I think that commericals should be directed at children in different ways.Instead of stereotyping such as directly focusing on beauty you could focus on being creative. All toys shouldn’t be based on genders. I’m pretty sure girls are aware that gun toys are for boys and little girls shouldn’t play with them. Boys know baby dolls are for girls and they shouldn’t play with them.

    If little girls are introduced to a certain way of life, their going to express themselves as to the way of life their accustom to. If a little boy only sees a grown man expressing necessary emotions, he won’t ever express his real emotions or feelings. Girls would express the characteristics of boys and boys would express the characteristics of girls of they couldn’t distinguish which toys were for what sex. Having gendered toys can cause controversy.

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  9. First of all there should be advertising to children. Not all advertisemens to kids are bad.And no I do not think that gendered toys and advertising change children's ideas about what is possible for them professionally-Tv does. Most kids growing when asked the question "what do you want to be when you grow up?" usually ssay something in the felds of basketball or football;firefighter etc. Because kids play with legos doesnt mean that they want to be a construction worker when they get older.
    No I do not think it's possible that the lack of technology, science, and building-based toys effects how girls perform in school. The parents do. We should quit putting some of the blame of the problems of our kids from some other source other than the parents.No I do not think that boy's toys limit their potential. My dad grew up with these toys and he's doing just fine.What would happen if the messages sent to boys and girls via toys and advertising were mixed up? Umm...we would have a lot of more homosexual kids.

    By. Sylvester Nzekwe

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  10. Anthony Collins

    I think that the article does have a point that the advertisements do change the children's ideas and limit the possible goals and professions they may become interested in. I believe that advertisements should be allowed but shouldn't favor either gender. Advertisements should just influence whoever's interested, boys or girls.
    I also believe that girl behaviors are influenced by advertisements, but not because of the lack of science and technology. I think that it's because of the importance of popularity, fashion, and emotion in the advertisements that most affect the girls. As far as the boys, I believe that they are given more potential for better professions because of the perceptions of the advertisements, like being a hero or leader.

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  11. Quintel Sibley

    It doesn't really make a difference to me. Whether commercials are genderized or not will not affect what the child wants generally. A boy could want a barbie doll, or a girl to want an action figure. It does affect how they wrap their minds around the toys, especially if their friends all have it.

    The lack of technology, science, and building-based toys effects how any child does in school. It's not necessary but it does help immensely. Things like building blocks and legos can help kids learn. Toys that don't aim towards a specific gender are the ones that actually help kids learn rather than just being for amusement.

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  12. The commercial that i viewed was interesting to me. Jus by looking and understanding what they actually advertise is stereotypical to both genders. I feel that they give out the wrong impression on little boys and girls of how they should b when they grow up. They advertise to little girls that they should cook, clean, and take care the babies. The advertising to young boys shows that they should be hands and do jobs such as construction. They also teaches them to be aggressive.
    I think that the toys advertisement puts the wrong picture into a childs young mind. I think that it limits them to what they should do and be in life. Their childhood dreams of the future would not be as high as it should, they wouldn't beable to dream big and go beyond of what they want to persue in life. I think that its wrong to portray genders like that. Children should beable to have fun with their toys and not learning that this is their role in life.

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  13. Gendered toys are very overrated. Not all toys are just for boys or just for girls. I understand that some parents don't think that boys shouldn't be playing with dolls because it might make them a little to feminine. But those same parents don't complain that their daughters may become more masculine because they are playing with "monster" trucks.
    Many times when making toys or commercials, the toy companies do not think about the children's futures. An example of that is when they make Easy Bake Ovens for little girls, they don't think about the fact that boys will some day need to learn how to cook as well. Another example of that is the doll that is somewhat like a real baby; boys may someday have children and they will need to know how to change pampers and feed babies. Every toy is made by the companies with the mindset of boys should grow up a certain way and so should girls; and that's why they make the toys the way they do. I personally think that they should continue making and advertising the toys the way they are now, because boys shouldn't be playing with dolls so young due to the fact that they may become gay.

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  14. The article and video was very interesting. When I was watching the video I saw how companied advertise toys for girls and boys and that’s not a bad thing. They are very creative with their ideas and know how to get the children attention. In some toy stores they have a blue section and a pink or purple section. Children love that and the company is getting their point across.
    From birth children are introduce to different things that their parents think is right for them. I really do not believe in the color thing. Blue is for boys and pink is for girls but that’s how the company sees it. Girls are supposed to play with Barbie dolls and make their face up with their friends and boys are supposed to play with big trucks and toy guns.

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  15. The video and articles shows how companies that manufactures toys, advertised what is normal for children. Watching the video I saw how companied advertise toys for girls and boys and that’s not a bad thing in a way. The aricle teaches boy how to be competive, have power, be demanding, and even conquering. It also teaches girls to be chile rearing, homemaking, self image, and popularity. I don't think gendered toys can change children's ideas about what is possible for them professionally.

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  16. I never thought about the ideas of boys and girls playing with the same toys was a bad idea.These articles and videos made me think a lot about the idea of gendering toys.Gendered toys are very overrated. Not all toys are just for boys or just for girls. I understand that some parents don't think that boys shouldn't be playing with dolls because it might make them a little to feminine. But those same parents don't complain that their daughters may become more masculine because they are playing with "monster" trucks.
    I do not think it's possible that the lack of technology, science, and building-based toys effects how girls perform in school. The parents do. We should quit putting some of the blame of the problems of our kids from some other source other than the parents.No I do not think that boy's toys limit their potential.?But i do think things like this messes with he childs mind.

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  17. As I watched television, I was always aware of the gendered commercials towards children but i never looked into it as in depth as the video did. Society today is heavily based on gender roles, but would work just as well or even better without these roles. The toys for girls limits their horizons to cooking, cleaning, and beauty and leads them to believe they cannot achieve the same thing males can. The boys toys also is limiting, but mainly on good problem solving techniques and handling their emotions.
    I think gendered toys and advertising does create false ideas for children and their career choices. The commercials focus on the extreme stereotypes of masculine and feminine traits which easily molds young minds. Girls aren't encouraged to build or create, and boys aren't encouraged to cook or be a nurturing parent. These ideas can clearly be seen in home and work environments around the country.

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  18. I feel that gender toys are very sexist! The toy commericals empower boys to build and use technology. When the girl commericals are only about cooking and fashion! Basically, I agree with the video boy toys are alot more educational then girl toys. But, honestly parents also have a hand in which toy a child picks!

    I strongly believe that girls toys are lacking that educational resource. In Francis study she says "Of the girls' choices," "the learning potential was limited, and there was little that could be related to skills development that relates to the curriculum, although Baby Annabell provides well-developed information on the needs of a baby and how to meet those needs." It's very sad because I feel like instead of teaching the women to be strong they are learning tobe home makers!

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  19. Yes I do think that there should be no advertising directed at children, because I believe having advertising directed toward children is right off the back telling them what it is that they should. How boys and girls should be. It’s telling them that boys supposed to build, do things with their hands, be completive, ready to fight, and be rough. And advertising not showing the boys how they have feelings to. How to caring and loving. That it’s good to know how to build and to give them skills to work in the workforce. But with girls it doesn’t show them how to build or even do things for themselves. All advertising is telling girls to do is to learn how to cook, to clean up the house, take care of babies, and look pretty. It’s not teaching them anything of how to do anything really for themselves that will help them in the workforce.
    I think that both boys and girls that they both need the skills that advertising is either just showing to the boys or just the skills that advertising is showing to the girls, because really in life boys and girls need all of the skills to be a fully functioning human bean. Girls need to know how to work and do for themselves and not to just look pretty. And boys need to know how to express their feelings, be caring and loving to their families and others, they also need to know how to help with babies, and about housekeeping. They don’t need to know only how to work, because that’s not all it is to life.

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  20. I feel that the toys in the commercials are very sexist. The toy commercials for the boys encourage them to build and use technology while the girl commercials are only about cooking and fashion! Basically, I agree with the video boy toys are a lot more educational then girl toys. But, parents also have a hand in which toy a child picks but their decision is basically about who they want their child to be like.

    I believe that girls toys are lacking that educational resource. In Francis study she says "Of the girls' choices," "the learning potential was limited, and there was little that could be related to skills development that relates to the curriculum, although Baby Annabell provides well-developed information on the needs of a baby and how to meet those needs." It's very sad because I feel like instead of teaching the women to be strong and independent they are teaching the girls to be submissive home makers!

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  21. The lack of technology, science, and building-based toys do not affect how girls perform in school. Toys that are generated to boys help them excel, while the stereo type based toy strongly effects how girls perform. The technology is there but, it’s directed to the wrong purposes, which only allow girls to stay in the mindset that all they need to do is cook, clean, and stay inside the house. The toys the boy’s have doesn’t limit their potential. There are many things that helps influence them to use their imagination, which is the reason why some boy excels more.

    If the messages sent to boy and girls advertisements were mixed up there would be a huge controversy. Boy’s should not think its okay to play and drive a pink Barbie jeep, play with dolls, or easy bake ovens. While it is okay for girls to want the same toys the boys have although, it’s only a phase they will grow out. I strongly don’t support young boys playing with the opposite sex toys. After watching the advertisement I find is absolutely ridiculous.

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  22. I don't agree with the fact that advertisement should not be directed towards children. How will the children know what fun toys are coming out if there is no commercials? If children don't play with toys then their childhood is getting put in jeopardy. Yeah I do think it change the children possible profession because a young man may like to cook but according to the commercials cooking is for little girls. On the other hand, a lil girl might want to play with a gun cause she want to be a cop but the commercials say that guns are are for young boys.

    I think it would be a good idea to mix the commercials cause it would open up the children's minds more. It would make the children feel like they can do ANYTHING they want to and gender wouldn't matter. It would let the young man know that he could be a cook if he wanted to and also give the young lady know that she can be a cop if she want to.

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