Girls in sparkly, pink dresses. Boys crazy about anything with wheels. Gender differences are everywhere. It’s difficult not to see those differences and then attribute them to something that is hardwired at birth, but neuroscience shows that there is very little difference between boys’ and girls’ brains.
Host Jessica Rolph welcomes Dr. Lise Eliot to this episode. She is a professor of neuroscience at the Chicago Medical School and the author of Pink Brain, Blue Brain: How Small Differences Grow Into Troublesome Gaps — and What We Can Do About It. Lise and Jessica explore ways we, as parents, can help break down damaging gender stereotypes.
[1:12] How do boys’ and girls’ brains differ?
[3:22] How should we think about gender stereotypes? Why is it important to avoid them?
[4:30] Lise talks about the trends she has noticed in parenting both genders.
[5:53] Do mothers talk more to preschool-aged daughters than sons?
[9:17] Lise talks about how to raise children who can fully express themselves by not discouraging what could be considered gender-inappropriate play.
[11:23] What should parents do about a relative or caregiver who is showing disapproval of their boy’s interest in princesses and “girl stuff”? How can parents explain their philosophy to that person?
[13:11] Toddlers are naturally interested in categorizing; what is the reason for that?
[15:27] Lise talks about dressing our boys and girls.
[17:23 ] Jessica shares her takeaways from the conversation with Lise.
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