The effects of non-sexist children's literature and teacher training on the sex role perceptions of black and Mexican-American prekindergarten children
Thiem, Dolly I.
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The purpose of this four-week study was to measure the effect of non-sexist children's literature and teacher training on the sex role perceptions of 79 black and Mexican-American prekindergarten children. Seven Title I classrooms in two north Texas schools were randomly assigned to one of the three experimental conditions: I - Control, II - Non-sexist stories only, and III - Non-sexist stories with trained teachers. The non-sexist books were selected from non-sexist bibliographies. A checklist from Project Training Resources for Educational Equity (T.R.E.E.) was utilized to select twenty non-sexist books. The teachers in Condition III were trained utilizing materials from Project T.R.E.E. developed by Women's Action Alliance immediately preceding the treatment. The treatment was focused on morning and afternoon storytimes over a four-week period. Parallel adult and child measures were developed to assess the rigidity/flexibility dimension of sex role perceptions. The Sex Role Perception (SRP) measure was administered to all children as the pretest and posttest. The Adult SRP was administered to the trained teachers as a pretest and a posttest. The non-trained teachers were administered and Adult SRP as a posttest only. Analyses of covariance did not find significant differences in posttest SRP scores by ethnicity, sex, age, or exposure to an experimental condition. A Wilcoxon Matched-pairs Signed-ranks test found a significant difference in teachers' sex role perceptions after exposure to validated non-sexist training. The Mann-Whitney U test revealed the trained teachers displayed a significant difference in non-sexist posttest scores from scores of nontrained teachers.