No Gender December, an Australian campaign to end the gender-marketing of toys to children was launched this week and it has already received a lot of media attention (for example here, here, here, and here). I am a passionate supporter of No Gender December and Play Unlimited.
Play is the powerhouse of development.
Why? Because I believe that children have the right to explore their world freely and widely, to have rich and complex dreams, to inherit a world of open doors. Why would anyone want to put limits on their child’s future potential? Play is the powerhouse of development. It is not a trivial leisure activity. The cognitive, emotional, social and physical development of children is fuelled by play. All children benefit from being offered a wide variety of play experiences. Girls benefit from playing with building blocks, dinosaurs, trains and chemistry sets. It fuels their interest in the world and builds the foundations to maths and science. Boys benefit from playing with dolls, tea sets, and doll houses. It fuels their interest in people, social situations and relationships and contributes to their social and emotional development. Sure, buy your daughter a doll (my daughter has several), and buy a doll for your son too.