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leidona gjoni

on 5 November 2014

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Gender Identity
“Gender is something everyone thinks they understand, but most people really don’t. We will break it into three categories: identity, expression, and sex. It’s less “this or that” and more “this and that.”
When does a child realize their gender identity?
- A child’s awareness of being a boy or girl begins within the first year of life.

- Between the ages one and two, children become aware of physical differences between boys and girls.

- Before the age of three they can differentiate sex-stereotyped toys. This is when children learn gender role behavior. As in what “what girls do” and “what boys do”.

- By three years old they can also become aware of boy and girl activities, interests, etc.

- By age four children’s gender identity is stable and they are aware they will always be a boy or a girl.

Gender Expression: How You Demonstrate Who You Are
Gender expression is something that often changes from day to day, outfit to outfit, event or setting to event or setting. It’s about how the way you express yourself aligns or doesn’t with traditional ways of gendered expression. And like gender identity, there is a lot of room for flexibility here.

It is likely that you slide around on this continuum throughout the week without even thinking about it.
How does a child view their gender identity in middle childhood?
- Gender identity continues to become more established.

- Children express his or her gender through specific gender role behavior.

- Some of these behaviors began during the preschool years:

1. Play activities
2. Social behavior
3. Manner (physical gestures/ non verbal actions) and style
4. Social Relationships

The gender-role behavior of children is strongly influenced by their identification of males and females in their lives. The media also plays a very strong influence.

Biological Sex:
The Equipment Under the Hood

By: Samantha Alberino, Briana Castelao, Leidona Gjoni, Erica Mulkay, Marielle Petimar
Gender Identity:
Who You Think You Are
It has been accepted that we form our gender identities around the age of three, and after that age it is incredibly difficult to change them. Formation of identity is affected by hormones and environment just as much as it is by biological sex. Oftentimes, problems arise when someone is assigned a gender based on their sex at birth that does not align with how they come to identify.


Gender Expression: Gender expression refers to all of the external characteristics and behaviors that are socially defined as either masculine or feminine, such as dress, grooming, mannerisms, speech patterns and social interactions. Social or cultural norms can vary widely and some characteristics that may be accepted as masculine, feminine or neutral in one culture may not be assessed similarly in another.
Biological sex refers to the objectively measurable organs, hormones, and chromosomes you possess.

Being female means having a vagina, ovaries, two X chromosomes, predominant estrogen, and you can grow a baby in your stomach area.

Being male means having testes, a penis, an XY chromosome configuration, predominant testosterone, and you can put a baby in a female’s stomach area.

Being intersex can be any combination.

For example, someone can be born with the appearance of being male (penis, scrotum, etc.), but have a functional female reproductive system inside.

Total number of people whose bodies differ from standard male or female = one in 100 births
Sexual Orientation:
Who You Are Attracted To.
It is estimated that approximately 5 to 9 percent of youth are gay or lesbian, bisexual, or uncertain about their sexual orientation.

The American Psychiatric Association and the American Psychological Association changed their stance on homosexuality in the 1970s, stating that it is not a disorder and that sexual orientation is not a person's individual choice, nor can mental health professionals "change" the sexual orientation of their clients.

Experiences of being gay at school - Examples
Bisexual -> "Is bisexuality a "third kind" of sexual identity, between or beyond homosexuality and heterosexuality?

Or is it something that puts in question the very concept of sexual identity in the first place? Why, instead of hetero-, homo-, auto-, pan-, and bisexuality, do we not simply say "sexuality"? And does bisexuality have something fundamental to teach us about the nature of human eroticism?"

—from Vice Versa: Bisexuality and the Eroticism of Everyday Life, by Marge Garber

Gender identity disorder:
characterized by strong, persistent cross-gender identification; people believe they are victims of a
biologic accident
and are cruelly imprisoned in a body incompatible with their subjective
gender identity

Those with the most extreme form of gender identity disorder are called

These disorders are considered mental disorders because the body does not match the person's psychologic (felt) gender.
Time: 4:22-5:12
• Transgender, at its most basic level, is a word that applies to someone who doesn't fit within society's standards of how a woman or a man is supposed to look or act. Transgender may be used to describe someone who was assigned female or male at birth, but later realizes that label doesn't accurately reflect who they feel they are inside.
A bisexual person is someone who is sexually and/or emotionally attracted to people of all genders. Many people who experience a wide range of feelings towards both men and women use the term bisexual.

Bisexuals often feel ostracized from both straight and gay communities because they’re “in the middle.”

Freud thought we were all born bisexual, and may develop a preference later in life. Further studies do not support this, but most people have had at least some level of feeling for both genders at some point in their lives.

Historically speaking, bisexuals have been part of the lesbian & gay movement right from the beginning and they’re still there now.
They’re fighting the same sorts of issues: discrimination based on who they love.

Bisexual Resource Center, Boston, MA, http://www.biresource.org
According to the National School Climate Survey by GLSEN, in regards to School Safety:

- 55.5% of LGBT students felt unsafe at school because of their sexual orientation, and 37.8% because of their gender expression.

- 30.3% of LGBT students missed at least one entire day of school in the past month because they felt unsafe or uncomfortable, and over a tenth (10.6%) missed four or more days in the past month.

- Over a third avoided gender-segregated spaces in school because they felt unsafe or uncomfortable (bathrooms: 35.4%, locker rooms: 35.3%).

- Most reported avoiding school functions and extracurricular activities (68.1% and 61.2 respectively) because they felt unsafe of uncomfortable.

A Rutgers University first-year student, Tyler Clementi, committed suicide after roommate videotaped him in a gay encounter. Asher Brown was 13 years old, and after being bullied about his sexual orientation for two years, he took his life.

Seth Walsh was also 13 years old and took his life after being bullied and teased about his sexual orientation. These were all due to school bullying.
Creating a Safe Environment for LGBT Youth

It is important to build a safe environment for all youth, whether they are straight or LGBT. All youth can thrive when they feel supported. Parents, schools, and communities can all play a role in helping LGBT youth feel physically and emotionally safe:

Federal Civil Rights Laws and Sexual Orientation
Federal civil rights laws do not cover harassment based on sexual orientation. Often, bullying towards LGBT youth targets their non-conformity to gender norms. Many states protect against bullying because of sexual orientation in their state laws.

Since same-sex marriage is not legal in every state in the United States, it gives a reason for people to continue bullying.
Since this map was created, West Virginia, Nevada and North Carolina have legalized same-sex marriage.
Reliable estimates indicate that between 4 and 10% of the population is gay, which means in a public school system of more than one million, like New York City's, there are at least 40,000 to 100,000 gay students.
Schools should be a young person's primary center for learning, growing, and building a foundation for success in the world. Growing up and getting through high school can be challenging for any student, but LGBT youth too often face additional obstacles of harassment, abuse, and violence. The bullying of LGBT students is a severe, nationwide problem.
• Suicide is the leading cause of death among gay and lesbian youth nationally
• LGB youth are
4 times
more likely, and questioning youth are 3 times more likely, to attempt suicide as their straight peers.
• Nearly half of young transgender people have seriously thought about taking their lives, and one quarter report having made a suicide attempt.
• About 30% of all completed suicides have been related to sexual identity crisis
Statistics You Should Know:
(LGBT Students)

"I'm sorry to those I offended over the years. I'm blind to see that I, as a human being, suck. I'm an individual who is doing an injustice to the world and it's time for me to leave," read a post on Vigil's Twitter account, continuing: "The kids in school are right, I am a loser, a freak, and a fag and in no way is that acceptable for people to deal with. I'm sorry for not being a person that would make people proud. I'm free now. Xoxo - Carlos"

The increased use of Social Media has raised the rate of: Suicide, Depression, and Dropout Rates amongst the LGBT community

Two students, Dharun Ravi and Molly Wei, have been charged with two counts each of invasion of privacy after allegedly placing a camera in Clementi's room and livestreaming the recording online.

Clementi's post on his Facebook page read:
"Jumping off the gw bridge sorry..."

just 72 hours after his private life suddenly became public knowledge.
President Obama shares his message of hope and support for LGBT youth who are struggling with being bullied. He is committed to ending bullying, harassment and discrimination in all its forms in our schools and communities.
The Trevor Project
1. Provide crisis counseling to LGBTQ young people thinking of suicide.
2. Offer resources, supportive counseling and a sense of community to LGBTQ young people to reduce the risk that they become suicidal.
3. Educate young people and adults who interact with young people on LGTBQ-competent suicide prevention, risk detection and response.
4. Advocate for laws and policies that will reduce suicide among LGBTQ young people.

Tyler Clementi Foundation
States with laws that address harassment and/or bullying of students based on sexual orientation and gender identity
• The Human Rights Campaign Foundation is organized for the charitable and educational purposes of promoting public education and welfare for the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community.
- Advocates say improving school climate and legal protections are important because transgender and gender nonconforming children are targets of bullying.
- Creating a welcoming environment is an ongoing process for the school community. Here are some steps that educators, parents and advocacy groups recommend for creating a gender inclusive school community:

1. Don't separate children by gender

2. Start the day with inclusive language and stick with it.

("Good Morning, Class!" NOT "Boys and Girls")

3. Feature diversity in books, posters and other workbooks
4. Create a professional development plan to help educators
Your Rights:

The First Amendment
religion, expression, assembly,
and the
right to petition
. It forbids Congress from both promoting one religion over others and also restricting an individual’s religious practices. It guarantees freedom of expression by prohibiting Congress from restricting the press or the rights of individuals to speak freely. It also guarantees the right of citizens to assemble peaceably and to petition their government.
Teachers set classroom tone through language and lesson plans. They also can intervene in instances of bullying or name-calling and, when appropriate, use them as teachable moments.
Educators need to develop a shared understanding of gender identity and language to be able to communicate with students and parents.
Policies should address how to handle names and pronouns, bathroom use, extracurricular activities, student records, and confidentiality, said Westheimer with Welcoming Schools.
Each school approaches this differently. One school in Maine sent a letter home to parents informing them that a second-grader who identified as a girl the previous year would be recognized as a boy this year. Others incorporate the discussion into class or school-wide meetings.

The goal is the same: to set community norms for what's expected and create a platform for people to ask questions.
5. Have strong policies to support transgender students
6. Engage the entire school community
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Minorities like LGBT are often discriminated against. Moreover, if you are a minority in this community you are often faced with double the discrimination.

Many Latinos and African Americans feel like a double minority for being both an ethnic minority and a sexual minority.
"Gay Latinos 'minority twice over'". BBC. Retrieved 2012-10-01.
"homophobia Latino Community". Daily Kos. 2011-09-16. Retrieved 2012-10-01.
"Latin America Celebrates International Day Against Homophobia | Fox News Latino". Latino.foxnews.com. Retrieved 2012-10-01.
In the article Critical Multiculturalism and Preservice Teacher Education by Cynthia Hale Erickson, Multiculturalism and Critical Multiculturalism is examined and Erickson articulates that building trust within the classroom is the teacher’s first challenge.

Hooks (1994) discusses this challenge in Teaching to Transgress: “I enter the classroom with the assumption that we must build a community in order to create a climate of openness and intellectual rigor” (p. 40).

It is important to remember that we must make each student feel welcome in our classrooms, no matter race, gender, sexual orientation, culture, or language proficiency .
LGBT & Multiculturalism

LGBT communities intersect with multiculturalism in a unique way. Very often, especially in Western culture and societies influenced by Judeo-Christian and Islamic religions, LGBT groups have experienced systematic stigmatization and exclusion from the mainstream cultures.

Unlike most racial or ethnic minorities who‘s existence is recognized as legitimate through concepts of genetics and heritage, LGBT communities have had to fight to claim legitimacy.

This concept continues today in the debate over whether being LGBT is a matter of choice or a matter of internal biology.
Historically, Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender groups have formed their own groups--often underground or subculture--the last twenty years have seen an opening of awareness of LGBT rights, issues and culture in the United States.
Increasingly, especially in many urban and metropolitan circles, LGBT groups are recognized by the mainstream as having separate history and other cultural markers that set them apart, and in many ways LGBT issues, awareness and culture is being recognized.
For example
- Inclusion of Sexual preference into non-discrimination laws/ equal housing and employment laws
-Gay pride parades
-Gay and Lesbian couples’ access adoption services
- President Obama declaring June the LGBT Pride/History month
“We are all creative, but by the time we are three of four years old, someone has knocked the creativity out of us. Some people shut up the kids who start to tell stories. Kids dance in their cribs, but someone will insist they sit still. By the time the creative people are ten or twelve, they want to be like everyone else.”

~Maya Angelou
However, these instances are by no means a representation of a majority of acceptance for LGBT groups within America. The controversial reception of these previously mentioned examples highlights the fact that LGBT culture is not fully accepted or recognized by the mainstream.

Another example is in the efforts that continue to fight for LGBT issues to be included in public school multicultural awareness and sex-education curriculums, as well as safe environments for LGBT students and people who might be discovering their sexuality.

~Another thing to consider is how LGBT groups are perceived as part or separate cultures in other nations.
"The secret of education lies in respecting the pupil.” ~Ralph Waldo Emerson

Nearly 9 out of 10 LGBT students have experienced harassment and reported being bullied at school within the past year because of their sexual orientation
• LGBT identify groups report being five times as more likely to miss school because they feel unsafe after being bullied due to their sexual orientation
• Almost half of the gay and lesbian teens state they have attempted suicide more than once.
• Each episode of LGBT victimization, such as physical or verbal harassment or abuse, increases the likelihood of self-harming behavior by 2.5 times on average.
• It has been estimated the 1,500 gay and lesbian youth commit suicide every year
- Build strong connections and keep the lines of communication open. Some LGBT youth often feel rejected. It is important for them to know that their families, friends, schools, and communities support them.

- Establish a safe environment at school. Schools can send a message that no one should be treated differently because they are, or are perceived to be, LGBT. Sexual orientation and gender identity protection can be added to school policies.
- Create gay-straight alliances (GSAs). GSAs help create safer schools. Schools must allow these groups if they have other “non-curricular” clubs or groups.

- Protect privacy. Be careful not to disclose or discuss issues around being LGBT with parents or anyone else.
How are schools handling this?
• This person may now live life as a man or woman, or may feel that their gender identity can't be truly summed up by either of the two options we're usually given (male or female). They might feel like they're in between those two options; both male and female; or outside the two-gender system entirely—neither male nor female.
• In this sense, it applies to those who feel they don’t fit within society's standards of how women and men are supposed to look and act (gender non-conforming).
• A transgender identity is not dependent upon medical procedures. Some transgender people have surgeries, or take hormones, to bring their body into alignment with their gender identity. But, many do not and that doesn't mean they're not transgender.
• You might think someone is transgender, but this is a personal identity that some people claim and others do not.

• Wait to see how someone self-identifies (or ask, respectfully) before assuming.

Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD) Transgender Glossary of Terms.
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