Gender-responsive teaching and learning in the early years

Recently, under GENTLE project activities, VVOB Vietnam and the Research Centre for Gender, Family and Environment in Development (CGFED) organized a training session on Introduction of gender responsive play based learning toolkit for teachers and school leaders from 15 model schools of Quang Nam and Quang Ngai provinces.

After the training, participants understood the importance of gender responsiveness in early childhood education to prevent gender based violence, their roles in forming and eliminating gender stereotypes and biases, school leaders learned how to support teachers in application of gender-responsive play-based learning in their class.

They also made plans from Sep. to Dec. 2019 to implement gender-responsive play-based learning to each model school.

Gender-responsive teaching and learning in the early years

At one of the training sessions. Photo: VVOB Vietnam

Young children in Vietnam are exposed to gender roles and expectations. This early gender socialisation is reinforced in preschool environments (e.g. through gender-specific toys and gender-based activities). Particularly in the central provinces of Vietnam, inequalities due to early gender socialisation are among the most persisting equity issues, affecting both girls and boys.

Children start forming their gender identities at the age of 4. Addressing children’s early years’ experiences through gender-responsive play-based learning is crucial to impact their long term cognitive and social-emotional development, and to work on the prevention and elimination of gender-inequality, a precursor to gender-based violence.

The GENTLE (Gender-responsive teaching and learning in the early years) project transforms preschools in 15 districts in Quang Nam and Quang Ngai provinces into environments of gender-responsive play-based learning, involving parents (and fathers in particular) to the fullest in the process.

Implemented from 2018 to 2021, the project centres on developing the capacity of preschool teachers and school leaders to challenge social and gender norms, create new rules, and support children in adopting new, more equitable attitudes and behaviours. They are provided with tools to effectively implement gender-responsive play-based learning at school and to advocate for this approach at home too with the parents of their young learners.

This project is co-funded by European Union and Belgian Development Cooperation Department.

In the coming time, VVOB Vietnam and CGFED will support teachers and school leaders in applying the toolkit through coaching visit and follow up making gender-sensitive decoration and gender-sensitive toys at school and class.

VVOB is a Belgian non-profit organisation which focuses on Education for Development. VVOB started working in Vietnam in 1992. Since 2008, it has focused on the education sector and early childhood education since 2014.

Founded in 1993 as one among the first Vietnamese non-governmental organisations (NGO), the Research Centre for Gender, Family and Environment in Development (CGFED) has been carrying out social scientific research and intervention activities, targeting at women’s development and gender equity./.

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