This is a good resource for both parents and teachers to read through. Parents and teachers can take the information from this article and teach children to practice advocating for respect. Children are greatly influenced by their parents and siblings. If parents and siblings are speaking in negative terms at home in regards to homosexuality, the early childhood student will pick up on this and then share these negative ideas with peers at school. That is why it is important for the teacher to put these negative thoughts and comments to an end if any of these negative thoughts and comments are heard in the classroom environment. Children should be taught that two males who like each other should be just as respected as a male and female liking each other. Also, children should be taught that two females who like each other should be just as respected as a male and female liking each other. Even though these early childhood students are very young and may not know what the term “homophobia” is, it is important that these early childhood students are taught by teachers how important it is to be kind to everyone. This builds a good foundation that will instill the idea of respect within each student.
This is an important article for teachers and parents to read. A lot of what is happening in school is gendered or sexualized and it is essential that educators have a strong understanding of how sex, gender, and sexuality can shape a student’s identity at such a young age. Schools are playing a dominant role in teaching and reinforcing the values that surround gender and sexuality. On the first day of school for pre-schoolers or kindergarteners, students are already identified as a “boy” or a “girl” on their registration forms. Their gender is constantly being reinforced to them by interacting with peers and teachers on a daily basis. Early elementary years is most often time where children develop their first crushes and learn about families, relationships, and what society expects them to be. There is important information to be taught to children from what parents and teachers take away from reading this article.