I have both a son and a daughter and can't help but notice just how different the two of them take on life. I've spoken with other moms and they seem to agree that boys are generally slower at learning and girls pick up on things quicker. Does this seem to be the case for everyone?
yes, i am sure it is- or maybe we mums just look after our little boys more? My girls were pretty independant from their first steps and they say I ought to give more responsibility to their 13 year old brother- so maybe its not the boys but the mums?
I'm not sure. I know I've seen boy geniuses before, mostly on talk shows, etc. My son is no genius but he's not as quick to learn words, sentences, etc. like his sister. I don't handhold him either because he is very independent in spirit and likes his space. The biggest difference I've noticed is that my son's interests are very focused on one or two things while my daughter is intensely curious about everything and asks questions constantly. I'd just like for my son to widen his field of interests, maybe this will help him learn more or faster?
You are correct Julia, boys and girls brains are different. On average, girls develop verbal skills such as grammar, spelling and vocabulary more quickly than boys. They tend to speak more words than boys are very fluent in social interactions and perform well in cooperative learning situations. Girls also lean toward inductive reasoning, expanding upon basic knowledge based on experience. The female brain also uses emotion as a stimulant toward learning and incorporates multiple senses in the process. On average, girls tend to outperform boys academically.
Boys usually are good at deductive reasoning. They use a set of criteria and evaluate concepts based on that criteria. They tend to learn more efficiently when they have plenty of space and when they can move around during the learning process. They prefer visual aids such as graphs, diagrams and symbols, and are likely to manipulate these visual representations efficiently. The male learning style gravitates heavily toward non-verbal communication. While boys may not outperform girls academically, they often are much more confident about their academic abilities than girls.
What?... Boys and girls are different... no.. that would infer men and women are different. NO! It cannot be... the leftsists and feminists say there is no difference in the genders. Who is lying?
I am not sure what you are talking about. Everyone knows males and females differ, the debate is about in what way, to what extent, the causes and whether it is morally significant or deterministic.
different, but equal, and I don't know how we manage it but we do! and everyone is different really, so big deal! Why people are suddenly on such a gender trip I can't figure - but better just to see and accept people the way they are and stop trying to classify or put people in a little category - it just doesn't work.
The leftists in Cali are spouting that a child is born tabla rusa... and is non-gender till we impose it on them.
that is not about equality.
And no one said they were not equal. But to think we are equal in all aspects is absurd. There are serious differences between the genders. But as for under the law... we are all equal under the law, and in societies eyes.
everyone knows better than to discuss with people like you, since you obviously have all the "right" answers - a certain amount of pomposity attached to this subject is just ludicrous. as soon as I saw that you lead off with the word "leftists" I started laughing so much I can barely type this! enough already.
Yeah... thats the facts. Too bad if you do not like them. And I am sure tha Gay rights and the transgender folk n Cali vote republican. That ios what the movement out there says, children are blank slate and we oppress them by impressing our gender and beliefs on them.
Should I post docs to prove it?
why do care what those people think? or do you just want to point your gnarly finger at somebody and call out "wrong!"
We are discussing the difference between boys and girls. I pointed out there are those peple in this country who think there is no difference and indeed no gender at birth.
Are you paying attention to the conversation? You do understand the expression, differences in gender? This is not a conversation where there is only one point of view, or one belief. And it could go to alot of other places in the future.
I interpreted the OP as asking what we individually think about gender differences - not whether we think other people are off-base or wrong about what they think! What you think, then, is that other people shouldn't have an opinion different than yours. whatever that is!
I am simply discussing the differences, period.
And the differing opinions about those differences.
I did not know we had to stay with some strict guidline and narrow definition of the OP. Evey thread in this place goes from east to west, north to south and around the world on a daily basis.
So I don't see why you would get mad at me for expounding on the subject and taking it any direction it goes.
People can argue gender equality, gender differences etc. and blah, blah, blah... the argument will go on forever. What we can't argue with are facts, brain chemistry, genetics, dna, and hard science... those are just what they are. Everybody is different which is what makes the world such a wonderful place. I don’t know about anyone else, but I certainly don't want to be neutralized, homogenized, sanitized, and processed into a politically correct, non-thinking, inoffensive, robotic replica of a what a human being used to be. And I've had my fill of being labeled, pigenholed, and categorized. We are not all the same. We should all have the same rights, chances, and opportunities, but we all have different strengths and weaknesses, and that's just a reality no matter how much anybody wants to deny or negate it.
When I had my kids I figured I was going to raise them "as human beings first" and let their respective sexes take care of themselves, as they got to the age when Nature tends to do that anyway.
I have one son (adopted as a baby). One that I had myself. A daughter that I had my self. They're grown now.
As babies and small children, personality-wise they were very much the same kind of kids - all energetic, but also well behaved. School-wise, my first son (who hadn't gotten the best prenatal environment and who got off to a rough start in his first couple of months (skull fracture and retina scars, among other issues) had trouble with a visual/perceptual learning problem. He tested as high as the others in other skills, but not in that particular area.
The other two kids were absolutely the same. They both started showing signs of being interested in reading really early (two). They both were at the top of their class. Both read at eleventh grade level in third grade. Both do well in all areas, although my son (the younger one) tends to lean more away toward the "math-related" subjects than his sister. It's not really an ability thing for him. It's more an interest thing for him (as it is for me). Biological-father parents' wise: My biological kids have a mother who leans toward the verbal/people kind of stuff, and their father is a "hard-core" engineer/software-designer type.
Since their father worked long hours when they were little I essentially raised them alone in the first several years, so there wasn't much influence on them as far as that goes. I think some fathers (and mothers) start really young, treating their boy babies differently from the way they treat their girl babies. I didn't. My sister was the same with her three kids (one daughter, two sons), and it's the same with them. I think her two sons had a little less of a time getting some school stuff down.
Anyway, I know it's only "the old" anecdotal evidence that nobody ever pays any attention to, but I'm convinced that a whole lot of the differences people see by the time children get school are the result of nurturing in the first three/four/five years.
"They both were at the top of their class. Both read at eleventh grade level in third grade."
I am not sure if this is a great thing for your children, or a sad state of affairs and indictment of the education system itself uop to the 11th grade.
I mean no insult by that. It is just that you would think it would have been an almost impossible task for the children. But congrats on raising some intellectually gifted children.
I don't think it's so much a matter of "intellectually gifted", as it is having kids who are happy enough to be enthusiastic about learning early - which, in turn, helps give them a head start at the time they start school. I've known so many, many, babies and preschoolers who are obviously very much the same kind of little kids my own were. The difference is, I think, that I spotted it when they were two and eager to learn things like letters. Some parents don't notice, or seize on it, because, maybe, they aren't thinking their child is ready. No insult at all taken. It's not at all an impossible task, though. Kids learn to read, pick up skills, and get to a level where they're pretty much all set as far as reading goes. (Maybe it's worth noting that I didn't just leave the teaching of reading up to the schools once they got to kindergarten age. At home, I made a conscience effort to supplement the kind of learning they were offered - not just "copy" what the schools were teaching them.)
Anyway, I've got my axes to grind with the public school system; but the reading level of eleventh graders is the reading level people generally bring to college with them. I'm fairly certain most kids who start college aren't reading at grade school level.
(Not that it matters, but the measurement of skill level used to determine those reading levels came from standardized testing, but also from individual evaluations I had done as part of wanting to know what their skills were and how best to meet their academic needs.)
I applaud you your efforts and accomplishments then, and your chidren's. ))
I'm only adding this here because I think this particular addition may be more potentially useful to anyone with young children than the post about whether a son happened to be a early a reader as a daughter:
My first son (the one who had trouble in school because of a "mysterious, visual-perceptual, problem), had trouble with reading (and subjects that hinged on it) right through school. He got "A's" and "S's" in all the stuff that didn't involve his reading level, and he struggled with the very subjects that mattered most. It was awful to have to watch him deal with hit, and it was frustrating that the school couldn't seem to figure out what the problem was either.
Anyway, I did with him what I did with his younger siblings - offered him activities and introduced him to interests/subjects outside of school. I wasn't into "structured" learning at home. I made it comfortable and natural, but an environment where reading was just what we all did. I offered him books that I thought would interest him, and aimed to offer books that had lots of pictures but enough words that, in the relaxed setting of home, he might try to muddle his way through (and he did). Through auditory learning (which he was great at) he'd picked up spelling phonetically, so that helped him muddle his way through books at home.
It was only in - like - the last six years of so that I've since learned that it is now known that if a baby/young child is in stress/anxiety in his early months his stress response system may be "wired" in a way that affects him for the rest of his life. In other words, he may have a stress response that's inappropriate for the circumstances. I'm convinced now that he was nervous enough in school that his stress response was "on high", and that contributed to his inability to concentrate on what he was trying to visually learn (read/recognize letters).
This was a little boy who, when he had his eyes checked, came up with answers that made the doctor say he was "legally blind" (which he wasn't/isn't). It was a little boy who, in fifth grade, when the teacher was saying what an " otherwise bright boy" he was, added in that he was "functionally illiterate" and would grow up that way. On the other hand, this was the same fifth-grade kid who had one of the books from home in his bedroom, taught himself where countries around the world are located and memorized capitals. With what he HAD picked up in school, and the stuff he had access to at home, he would essentially teach himself, based on interest and what he was in the mood for. Needless to say, 4-year college wasn't an option for him.
This was also a kid, though, who started to teach himself to play guitar by reading guitar/music magazines. He was 18 when a situation called for his reading aloud (to me) text from medical books/pharmaceutical; and as he'd read paragraphs to me (about illness his grandmother had, or about medications; and in order to share with me what he'd read about something), it was clear to me that my son could easily reader, and understand, the text in these specialized reference books.
The point here is, whether your child is a boy or a girl, and whether s/he has an easy time learning in school or a very difficult time, what makes a huge difference is whether parents supplement his learning (and encourage him to grow/learn beyond his grade level) at home. My son (the once called "functionally illiterate and going stay that way" today reads books on physics, philosophy, and any number of other things reading people find interesting to read. (He's still a fella who needs spell-checker in his e.mails - but so, often, does his college-grad-but-technical-minded father. )
(I'm sorry to seem to hijack this thread "off to the side" a little (or a lot), but I think of how things might have gone with my son if I hadn't known to really put in that conscious effort at figuring out the things that would encourage him to learn on his own (and learn in a different way than kids learn in school) - and he may have been that functionally illiterate person his fifth grade teacher predicted he'd be.)
I'm not trying to "pat myself on back" here. I just knew, right from the start, that the schools weren't going to do the whole job of getting any of my kids to reach their potential. There's a lot in this world that I know nothing about, but I knew how limited the schools are (even when all goes well with any one child or another).
I'm not talking about "teach your baby to read" or other "programs" that make for, essentially, structured learning. I'm talking about having a "learning-friendly", but relaxed, home environment, but also not limiting activities/books kids have to books/activities marked only for their own age level.
Anyway, sorry for the long-windedness. This is kind of a "cause" of mine, because I sure wish I knew, when my eldest son was in grade school, that I DID know what I was doing (rather than be made to feel like an "unobjective, optimistic, unrealistic" parent. Also, I wish the rest of the world had known (or at least publicized if this was already known, back in the late 80's/early 90's) the way that early stress/anxiety can affect a person's stress response system. Solving that mystery came too late to help my son with his school performance (and the associated self-esteem that tends to go along with it).
The way I see it, it's not too late for at least another struggling little boy or two out there.
Returning to the actual subject of this thread, here's what I wonder: If people tend to be a little less snuggly, or at least if they tend to treat infant boys in a way a little less "security-producing" than they do their baby girls - might that not help explain why at least some boys may lag a little more than some girls do?
As to your last para. I would think it would be different for each child parent relationship, and perhaps a cumulative thing. And I am impressed with your understanding of early child-hood development and education. Have you studied the subject?
An yes, education, "professionals", and I use therm loosly, have a way of thinking they are so much more knowledgable than the average parent. It is a shame really, it should be a team effort and they act like you, the parents, are the clean up boy for the bats and balls on the field after the game.
I agree that it has to be a team effort. I don't think it's fair or realistic to expect schools to offer each child what he, as an individual, needs. What irked me most about the schools, though, has been how a person can send in a perfectly ready (more than ready) child, only to have the schools assume he's not capable of what has been deemed "appropriate" for the "average" child, based on what average kids do - not on the potential of most children.
The areas you mentioned aren't something I've studied within the context of being a professional in either of those areas. I've studied/researched (for years) only as a writer with aims/projects involving specializing in these areas (again, only as a writer, though). Separate from that, before I had kids I studied up on my own, just because I thought people ought to make it a point to learn a few things about "building a person" before they have/adopt them. Also, with an adopted child, I had reason to want to get a really solid foundation in the Nature/nurture thing, adoption-related issues, and eventually that matter of having a child with a mysterious learning problem.
So, between having all those reasons and/or projects that involved a need/wish to do quite a bit of studying up/researching, I pretty much spent my late 20's, all of my 30's and most of my 40's engrossed in "all-things-brain-development-and education" for one reason or another. (That's why now - with my eldest son in his early 30's) I so often just come online and post whatever goofy stuff I feel like posting. Those 30's and 40's were an intense and busy couple of decades for me. )
"Men are from Earth. Women are from Earth - deal with it." is my favorite quote on this subject - but I don't remember who said it. and as for different "styles" of intelligence - who really can say for certain whether they are innate or even measurable or whether it all has to do with who is looking and what their basic intelligence style is - live is so subjective is what I am saying. Kids as they are growing are constantly changing, absorbing and acting with and on the world - it is enough to me that there is such huge diverisity and wonder in the world - I really, really tried to be very open minded about how and what my kids did as they developed - but then, I have a huge aversion to classification of humans - pigeon holing. I like to leave big openings for change and growth in everybody, even people who seem to be so wounded that they cannot accept how others live, act, behave and believe. Even they could change, could start to truly experience the world and absorb its meaning. I have a long way to go myself. The important thing is that as your children are growing and changing you are there, watching, and listening and accepting and aware of them and loving them.
Oh that "Women Venus/Men Mars" book!!! If there's one book that irks the heck out of me it's that one - and the fact that so many people actually bought the baloney in it.
I went through that book when it was new. Most of my "thinking style" and "communication style" traits fell under the men category. My husband's fell under the women category. Since neither of us any issues with our own gender/sexuality - I can only assume we aren't the only people who prove the stuff in that book baloney. You're right: Earth. Human beings. Wouldn't it be great if everyone could figure that out.... That's how my parents raised us. (I guess that's how they got a daughter who fell under that "male communication"/"male thinking" category in the baloney book.
Boys and girls are clearly different from one another however girls are different from other girls and the same for boys. As human beings we all bring a different experience to the life we live. Biologically and environmentally there are not two identical experiences.
I have a 3 year old boy and a 4 year old girl. Both spoke early (full sentences by two) and early stages of reading around the same time. My daughter can count to 100 and my son to 20. I treat each of them the same as far as expectations, "rough housing", reading, etc. I want them both to know that they are both capable of anything that they want to do. My daughter has climbed a rock wall and my son has worn play dresses and nailpolish. Slthough I definately see differences between my two children, differences are within each person not just the gender differences.
I firmly believe that LisaHW is right. The most formative years of learning and growing is birth to age 5. The more involved the parents are in providing learning opportunities within play, the more successful the child will be later in life. I see it on a daily basis in my job. Children come to kindergarten never having seen a book while others have had hundreds and thousands of books read to them by kindergarten. Those children who have not had that experience are at a severe disadvantage.
It is so very difficult not to treat your girl and boy babies differently - hard as I tryed, I know I couldn't. I hope it was mainly superficial stuff - like the gender bias attached to clothing and so on, because I was diligent about giving them the same amount of teaching the abc's, socialization, and getting ready for school and later helping with homework and after school sports etc. My kids all played the same sports (except my daughter was a swimmer and the boys not so much, thought they all surf) I don't think any of them had any real issues with their gender, they seem to feel comfortable in a mostly traditional environment. But, they are also very accepting of others when they are gay, bisexual, or transgender and they think it really odd when people can't accept all the aspects of genders.
When I find people discussing how to treat the different genders - I find they are usually way over 30 and weren't raised in a culture that is so open to all . . . so I feel the real issue is in why we even worry about who might have one kind of intelligence or another - or even whether there are different kinds of intelligence and what difference that makes.
No matter how hard we try to be equal about gender, eventually kids do run into people in authority who have gender bias - my kids seem to feel a little sorry for people who can't just accept all the genders sensing that is their loss, and then they let it go, they don't even worry about it. Of course, they haven't had children of their own yet - it will be interesting to see how that changes things for them vis a vis the gender thing.
I didn't treat my babies any differently, but I wasn't worried about putting blue on my boys and giving my daughter all the pink/light lilac stuff little girls like. It always kind of bugged me when people would say, "You can DRESS a girl." My thing was I was happy to dress my little boys too - only in clothes I thought would help them feel good and look good. They had boy dress clothes for special occasions, and my daughter had girly dress clothes. To me, that was part of helping them see that both boys and girls can enjoy looking their nicest and can like whatever sex they are. I just didn't put any more emphasis on "roughing up" my boys, or treat them as if they couldn't possibly be interested in "sit down" activities (that kind of thing). It always bothered me (and my sister) that the greeting cards of little boys were so often things like, "Howdy Buckeroo" and "Hey, there, Pardner!"
My father (although he wasn't alone, by any means) was actually kind of ahead of his time (WWII generation) in being someone who made sure both daughters and his son were essentially raised the same way. I'm not sure, though, it has to do with a person's "era". I knew a young father (early 20's) who made a big thing about wanting his one-year-old son to be "tough enough" to truly get hurt (by falling on blacktop from a step), and not have anyone comfort him once he was crying. There may be fewer of them out there today, but there are still "macho-conscious" young dads.
What was funny for me was that, of my three, it was my daughter who was the most active. Her brothers were healthy and active but more easily manageable". From before I had her, she was the one who never stopped moving. She "wirey-d" out her car seat at - like - four months, and I couldn't get the straps to ever keep her in (without smothering her, or cutting off circulation ). She was a Houdini. She never sat in shopping carts either! She'd stand from the day she learned how to stand. From the time they were babies, I could say to my little boys, "Please sit, so you won't fall." And they would. She just didn't care. She wasn't a "billiard ball" kid or anything like that - just a kid who wasn't about to sit still for too long.
I love these kind of stories illustrating how kids are kind of "born" with a personality and it never quits! I loved picturing that squirmy baby!
Oh... My son never moved - at all! Well, he'd move every few days, and it was so "iffy" I wasn't even sure it was movement. My pregnancy with him followed a disastrous one, so I can't even put into words today what I had in my mind when I didn't feel the baby move for "ages", and could only get him to make an "iffy" move if I stretch out on my back a certain way. I knew I should call the doctor a few times there, because they tell women if they don't feel the baby move for x-number/hours tell the doctor. I'd be - like - one hour before those x number hours had run out, and all I could get from him was an iffy, borderline, movement that I wasn't even sure wasn't gas (or whatever). I was so scared with him that I couldn't even tell my husband or mother. I just didn't let myself think about it, and kept going with those few iffy moves here or there. I was shocked when I actually delivered a kicking and screaming baby.
When I was expecting my daughter the nurse guessed it was a girl because she said girls' heartbeats tended to be faster. Sure enough - a little, wiry, non-stop, baby girl (who was a heck of a lot more tiring to deal with than her more "reasonable" older brothers. ) (Of course, as I think about this, I'm kind of the non-stop, never-still, type - as compared to their father, who tends to be more than comfortable sitting motionless for long periods of time. )
haha! I love it! I nursed my kids and I recall that they had totally different nursing styles - my oldest son used to pull away, smile up at me with this silly look - like he had some kind of secret we shared! and would nurse even when there was no more milk for awhile, smiling while he sucked away - it made me laugh uncontrollably. And my daughter was fierce about it, grabbing me and holding on for dear life and not letting go - I'd have to pry her away! and then she would really complain - not cry exactly, but complain - yelling at me until I distracted her with something else. My youngest was very tender and gentle and was always patting me - and when I weaned him and said for the first time " no more" he looked very concerned for me, reached up and stroked my cheek saying "no more? no more?" like he was very sad for me and he didn't try more than a couple more times to nurse any more, so unlike the older ones who took a lot of convincing to stop. Those three examples perfectly illustrate the kind of people they are - born that way, I really believe.
I have a set of twins - a boy and a girl - who are 2 years and 4 months old. I also have three older children, 2 boys (24, 19) and a girl (18). I have to say, I've seen a lot of differences with the older children but it is truly amazing to see the differences between boys and girls when they're twins and growing up side-by-side.
I didn't read all the posts in this thead (was a little turned off by some arguments) but I will say that I disagree that boys are "slower" than girls. What I've found with all my boys is that they learn differently than girls but they were/are by no means "slower". For example, my twin son is very mechanical. If he watches you do something once, like slide the arrow of an iPhone to the right in order to get to the main screen, he will imitate you until he can do it (which is usually three or four times). My twin daugther has learned this as well but after he taught her. My son figured out which shape blocks go into which hole of the shape ball first but my daughter learned the names of the shapes before he did. Then they taught each other what they learned. He appreciates pictures in books and delivering his own story of what's happening. She prefers to be read to and enjoys hearing the words.
At present, they can both count to 15 in English and Hawaiian, recite ABCs and Hakalama (Hawaiian alphabets), recognize and name 10 shapes, recognize and name 12 colors, recite the spelling of their names, and build "castles" and "barns" with their megablocks. They've reached these milestones at different times based on their own individual learning tendencies and curves. He can dribble a soccer ball (has been able to properly dribble since he could walk) and can punt properly as well (my older children are athletes) and, while his twin sister cannot do these things, she can draw shapes and string flower leis - things her twin brother cannot do.
I should probably mention that I was 40 when I had them and they were 6 weeks premature.
So, what am I rambling about again? Oh yeah .. boys and girls, much like men and women, are just different. They learn differently, at different times and have different skills and talents. As far as treating them differently .. well .. it's human nature. We treat our children differently because they are different people. I'm not saying we treat one better than the other - just differently.
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