Arguably, gender development is learnt through indirect as well as direct reinforcements. Gender development has major components which include gender role and gender identity. Media and family are two important ways in which children are socialized into their gender roles and characteristics. During early stages of development children act as stereotypes, this implies that they interpret things in their own way. They learn more of gender issues through media and family. For example gender identity is reinforced attitudes and beliefs that parents teach their children.
During gender development, children are exposed to the family at a very early stage. Hence they understand what it means to be a male or a female from the family. In fact children internalize information they receive from the family members at a very early age. Parents teach their children through discipline, rewards, comments, spending time as well as assigning them chores.
Family influences gender development through values, norms, and beliefs. Parents educate their children on the values and norms. Boys do things that fathers do while girls do what other sisters and mothers do (Cavanaugh & Kail, 2010). Family influences gender development in many ways this include manipulation, canalization, verbal application, as well as different activities. All this methods influence gender development in one way or another.
Media too influences gender development, especially when children watch Disney movies. In the society today media is also one of the socializing agents. Media present the distinct characters of male and female (Cavanaugh & Kail, 2010). Men are potrayed as having muscles while women are the weak. Children just take what they see in the movies and put it into practice. Girl child learn from television that the world we live is a man’s world.
In the world men are seen dominating the media industry. During development of gender girl will always be ready to be presented by male because they are knowledgable and powerful. On TV Male are portrayed to be creating, independent brave stable as well as courageous, on the other hand female are portrayed has caring, weak, compassionate and diplomatic. Ha s children grow girls tend to copy what female are portrayed to be, while boys act as men. Therefore, media influences all aspects of gender including roles, dress code, and language (Chrisler, C. & McCreary, 2010).
Conclusively, in the world today media and family are two influential factors during gender development. Furthermore, they form part of major ways of socialization during development of a child.
Chrisler, C. & McCreary, D. (2010). Handbook of Gender Research in Psychology: Vol 1.New
Cavanaugh, C & Kail, R. (2010). Human Development: A Life Span View. California: Wiley.