Preschool teachers cause children to be heterosexual, peer-reviewed paper suggests
Why not suggest you can play house with two moms?
A recent research paper suggests that preschool teachers are the reason most people identify as heterosexual.
“Reproducing (and Disrupting) Heteronormativity: Gendered Sexual Socialization in Preschool Classrooms,” published last month in the journal Sociology of Education, is based a sociology researcher’s observations of nine different preschool classrooms over the course of 10 months.
Heidi Gansen, a University of Michigan doctoral student whose research interests include gender and sexuality and childhood, concludes that preschool teachers are both constructing and disrupting gendered sexuality in multiple ways.
“[H]eteronormativity permeates” these classrooms to such an extent that preschoolers learn “that boys have gendered power over girls’ bodies,” Gansen writes in the abstract.
The paper was publicized by the Twitter account New Real Peer Review, which highlights peer-reviewed research papers it considers outlandish.
Why aren’t you telling boys to marry each other?
Gansen studied three Michigan schools whose early childhood programs demonstrate quality in “almost all” categories measured by the state’s Great Start to Quality system. The groups she researched spanned across white and nonwhite children from middle to lower class.
She wrote that teachers affect preschoolers’ gendered sexuality by “actively promoting or encouraging heterosexual discourses and practices” (facilitative), “sanctioning” them (restrictive), acknowledging or accepting “counter hegemonic performances of sexuality (disruptive) and “ignoring sexualized behaviors” without punishing children (passive).
In one preschool with relatively inexperienced teachers – one to three years – Gansen found they took more facilitative approaches, encouraging two-year-old children to have crushes, boyfriends and girlfriends, and even kiss one another. One asked a girl if she wanted a kiss from a boy the teacher thought liked her, even though the boy “was unable to ask and did not articulate the request to kiss Alexis on his own.”
Read the rest at: Pre-School heterosexuals