Opposite gender dressing and play in preschool

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Opposite gender dressing and play in preschool

What should you do if your child prefers to where opposite gender clothing or play with opposite gender toys? I think that it's okay in early childhood as children are discovering themselves and building their identity to cross over with girl toys and boy toys. I think that a lot of times, children will gravitate towards certain opposite gender or clothes, not out of any issue that is going on or because they think they are a boy or a girl, but because they are experimenting with their own identity. As children move into age four, they start to separate their genders. They start to realize; I'm a boy, you're a girl. If your child continues to play with these clothes or these toys, it might be worth seeking outside professional advice. I say that because if this is something that they are going to do life long, it is something that they are going to have to learn to deal with life long. What does that mean for your child in a school setting? When children in grade school might begin to tease, how are you, as a family, going to help your child to cope with this?

See Sara Schuelein Perets's video on Opposite gender dressing and play in preschool...


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Sara Schuelein Perets

Preschool Director

Sara Schuelein Perets is the founder and director of The Sunshine Shack preschool and the co-founder of Super Duper Arts Camp which is a summer camp and after school enrichment program designed for ages four to 14. Sara also teaches seminars and workshops to educators on process based art and exploration and is a parent educator. 

Sara’s original background was in art and classical texts and her first teaching assignment was teaching Shakespeare in Middle Schools. This experience inspired her to further her education in teaching where she found her true calling in early childhood.  She became fascinated by observing how young children could learn and develop from interacting with their environments. She has been working in the early childhood field for 15 years. Sara is passionate about raising awareness of the importance for quality in the early childhood field.

Sara’s approach to working with young children is one of respect and empathy while seeing each child for their individual needs.  Her workshops on child-led, process-based art reflects the child’s ideas and views of their world. Her seminars for parents are focused on the importance of how language can reflect who they are and how they see themselves. She believes our language and communication are powerful tools to help children gain critical thinking skills. 

Sara lives in Los Angeles with her husband and three sons.

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