Gender Stereotypes Activity

The goal of this activity is to make students more aware of how their childhood experiences have affected their current beliefs about gender roles.


For this activity, students will consider how their childhood experiences have affected their current gender-associated beliefs and behaviors.

Estimated time

15-20 minutes

Group Size

This activity works best with a class size of 30 or fewer, but it could be modified for larger classes by having the instructor rotate among the groups while they discuss the topic or by having teaching assistants facilitate discussion in the smaller groups.


Have students shop online at a website such as or for a child who is celebrating her or his 5th birthday. Half the class should shop for a girl and half should shop for a boy. Ask the students to search for toys they thought of themselves (and not just to search for boys or girls toys). In 5-7 minutes, they should choose a toy in the $10-20 range. After they have chosen the toy, each student should individually answer the discussion questions. The entire class can then discuss their answers.