Let Toys Be Toys - recommended reading

Books, articles and websites on the topic of gender stereotyping and play.


  1. Advice

    Aimed at childcare professionals, the 'Just like a Child' guide from Zero Tolerance Scotland, will be just as useful to anyone else who deals with young children. It outlines how gender stereotyping is connected to gender-based violence, and offers some practical tips about challenging stereotypes and enabling and encouraging children to play freely.
  2. Articles

  3. Dorothy Lepkowska writes about Roehampton Institute’s research into the ways in which gendered toys encourage different skills in boys and girls.

  4. Overview of how toy marketing has changed over the years. 
  5. BBC write up of findings of a task force from the American Psychological Association.
  6. Historical overview of how toys have been presented and marketing: 
  7. Quick overview of some of the relevant research about innate preferences
  8. The National Association for the Education of Young Children (US) research the impact of specific toys on play:
  9. Research carried out by the retailer Argos on the correlation between the play that adults enjoy as children and their current careers:
  10. BBC Newsround segments that show children are affected by stereotyping and are opposed to gendered labelling:

  11. Dr Cordelia Fine discusses whether there is any biological justification for a toy gender divide:
  12. Websites