I reminded the children of all of the activities we have done during the year related to gender and work. I asked the children to use these as stimuli and to come up with a philosophical question that they would like to discuss. These were the questions they came up with:
- Do you think that boys and girls should have the same responsibilities within the same job?
- Why do people think that there are jobs for boys and jobs for girls?
- Do you think that males or females prefer to work with humans or animals and why?
The chosen question was number three and these were some of the children’s responses:
‘Both could help humans or animals.’
‘It’s not fair if it’s just boys that get to do 1 job.’
‘It shouldn’t be one or another. They (males/females) should work with who they prefer to (humans/animals).’
‘I think males prefer to work with humans and females prefer to work with animals.’
‘My personal choice would be to work with animals rather than humans. I’m not sure if that’s because I’m a girl.’
‘I think women prefer to work with children and babies rather than adults. Women work with people with needs e.g. old people.’
‘Some people don’t like working with humans. Some people don’t like working with animals.’
‘I prefer to work with humans because it is easier to communicate with them. Both males and females like to communicate with people.’
This was an interesting discussion that followed on from looking at graphs of which professions are more female/male dominated. We had agreed that there are more females in caring professions but the consensus of this discussion seemed to be that it didn’t make a lot of difference if they were male or female as to whether they would chose to work with humans or animals.