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» Scarleteen Boards: 2000 - 2014 (Archive) » SCARLETEEN CENTRAL » Gender Issues » 'Gender Questioning' Boy

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Author Topic: 'Gender Questioning' Boy
SnailShells
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Member # 35485

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I'm going to be volunteering at an art camp for kids ages 6-10. At the councilor orientation yesterday, we were told that during one of the weeks, there would be a little boy who (I think the director said) is "gender questioning", and that we need to be very sensitive to him. Thing is, I'm not too sure what this entails, or what I should do if he's not accepted by the other kids. I don't know how blatant or subtle his femininity is; he may prefer playing with the girls and drawing fairies rather than monsters, or he may come to camp wearing a jumper. I'm not sure what to do if another kid asks him or me why he's wearing a dress/drawing fairies, or unknowingly/knowingly insults him (kids can be pretty cruel). Any advice?

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I thank God I was raised Catholic, so sex will always be dirty. --John Waters

Posts: 206 | From: Bay Area, CA | Registered: Oct 2007  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Heather
Executive Director & Founder
Member # 3

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Knowing what we know of you here, SnailShells, I think you'll do a great job with this child, and probably need less help than you think.

You might ask the director to be more specific about what they want and what limitations any of you have. If, for instance, this child does get teased or picked on, are you able to address gender issues and sensitivity with the other campers (and art can be a great vehicle for that)? If another kid does ask you about this, are you allowed to explain that everyone's gender identity is different, maybe by talking about how girls can wear pants now, or how some boys don't like sports while some girls do?

Also, tolerance.org has some AWESOME teaching materials on these issues, like this one: http://www.tolerance.org/teach/activities/activity.jsp?ar=841

You might nose around there to get some ideas about how to address bias with students/campers.

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
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Posts: 68290 | From: An island near Seattle | Registered: May 2000  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
SnailShells
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Member # 35485

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Wow, thanks very much! [Smile] I don't know if I'll be slotted to volunteer the week he's there, but I'll definately feel prepared if he is. I think it will be more of the Wrangler's job (one step above councilor, one below teacher) to adress these issues with the campers should the need arise, but at least I can point them in the right direction if they need help. Thanks again! [Big Grin]

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I thank God I was raised Catholic, so sex will always be dirty. --John Waters

Posts: 206 | From: Bay Area, CA | Registered: Oct 2007  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
   

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