Gender Spectrum is pleased to partner with the National PTA to provide resources for youth and parents who are interested in learning more about gender!
Gender norms and stereotypes limit all children and teens, no matter what their gender is, impacting how they feel about themselves, the kinds of opportunities they believe are open to them, and how they are treated by their peers. For example, did you know that girls as young as 6 start to believe that specific activities are “not for them” simply because they think they’re not as smart as boys? And bullying is strongly associated with gender stereotypes, particularly when it comes to the targeting of boys who are perceived as “too feminine.”
Understandings of gender are evolving rapidly and it can be hard to keep up. Young people are driving many of these changes. Over one-third of 13-21 year olds know someone who uses gender neutral pronouns according to a recent Pew Research Poll. Nearly 60% said that forms should include options besides “man” or “woman.”
These evolving understanding of gender affects all of us – adults and young people alike. Whether or not these topics are new to you, the resources below will help you further reflect upon the ways in which gender impacts your family, schools, and community.
Resources for Young People
Looking for a framework to better help you understand gender? Or something to share with the adults in your life to help them better understand the evolving world of gender? Start with:
- Understanding Gender
- The Language of Gender
- Gender FAQs for young people is a good overview of issues that arise for many youth around their gender.
Our video series on "Gender Expression" is a great way to see young people talking about their amazing variety of gender expressions! This series can be used to stimulate meaningful discussions about gender with your PTSA and student groups.
- Are you exploring your gender? Join one of our Gender Spectrum Online Discussion Groups for Teens and connect with other youth across the country. There’s one for pre-teens too (parent permission is needed if you are under age 13). Teens age 13 or older can join our online community the Gender Spectrum Lounge.
- Are you or someone you know navigating gender at school? Read Your Rights at School and Beyond and think about using our Gender Support Plan or one of our other tools for working with your school.
- Explore resources to make your school more gender inclusive. (In gender inclusive schools, students are included in all aspects of the school environment without limitations based on their gender.) Our Framework for Gender Inclusive Schools can help you think about strategies to implement in your school.
- If you have questions about ways to support transgender and nonbinary students these two resources will be helpful: our "Schools in Transition" guide and "Bathroom FAQs."
These are just a few of our resources for youth. You can find many more on our youth pages and check the rest of our website to find many more resources parents and educators too!