Children can learn about how to deal with a crisis by learning from the “most beautiful” teacher they meet, a study has found.
Key points:Research found teaching gender equality at an early age could boost children’s wellbeing and happinessThe research is based on a study of more than 1,000 children and found the most successful teachers are those who emphasise the importance of gender equality and treat their students as people who deserve to feel lovedAs a result, children who were taught gender equality could benefit from it as adults, said researchers from the University of Sydney.
The research was published in the journal Early Childhood Research and Development.
The study looked at a sample of 2,000 elementary and secondary school students aged 10 to 18 years old, and the more they were taught about gender equality, the better they fared on the “Gender Equity Index” – a scale measuring a child’s capacity to deal well with a variety of emotions.
The researchers found the best teachers on the index were those who highlighted gender equality as a key value.
“It’s really about getting children to really understand the different experiences of gender inequality, and that can help them deal with the emotions and challenges of being female and female-presented,” Professor Stephanie Taylor, who led the research, said.
“You can see that gender equity is important in understanding how to manage the emotions that can arise from a traumatic event and to cope with that, whether it’s anxiety or depression or anxiety-related stress.”
The study found teachers who stressed gender equality in lessons helped children deal with more positive emotions and better deal with trauma, while those who stressed it in lessons did not.
“Gender equity is really about understanding that gender is a continuum,” Professor Taylor said.
In addition to gender equality teaching, the research also found the “Bespective” course was one of the most effective ways of raising gender awareness.
“One of the things that makes the Bespective course so effective is that it’s actually very much a conversation about what it means to be female,” Professor Turner said.”[It’s] about asking the question: what does it mean to be a woman?
And it’s about learning how to recognise gender as a spectrum.”
In our study, we found that it helped students deal with gender as an issue, and also how they would be able to talk about gender in the classroom, and it helped them to understand how gender could affect them as people.
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