Please forward this error screen to 85. Gender nonconformity in children can have many forms, reflecting various ways in which a child relates to their gender. In literature, gender age regularities of the development of children of preschool age and gender atypicality are used synonymously with gender nonconformity.
The concept of childhood gender nonconformity assumes that there is a correct way to be a girl or a boy. There are a number of social and developmental perspectives that explore how children come to identify with a particular gender and engage in activities that are associated with this gender role. Psychoanalytic theories of gender emphasize that children begin to identify with the parent, and that girls tend to identify with their mothers and boys with their fathers. The identification is often associated with the child’s realization that they do not share the same genitals with both parents. Social learning theory emphasizes the rewards and punishments that children receive for sex appropriate or inappropriate behaviors. One of the criticisms of social learning theory is that it assumes that children are passive, rather than active participants in their social environment. Cognitive development theory argues that children are active in defining gender and behaving in ways that reflect their perceptions of gender roles.
Gender schema theory is a hybrid model that combines social learning and cognitive development theories. Bem argues that children have a cognitive readiness to learn about themselves and their surroundings. Studies with young rhesus macaques suggest that some gender-typical preferences may not only be caused by human socialization. Toys for girls tend to be round and pink, while toys for boy tend to be angular and blue. The subtle characteristics of toys may differentially appeal to the developing brains of female and male children. In a study of toy preferences of twelve- to 24-month-old infants, males spent more time looking at cars than females and females spent more time looking at dolls than males.