What do toys say about your child?
It’s not uncommon today to hear a lot of talk about gender, but when it comes to toys, inherent sexism has always been a thing.
Think about when you were growing up: Boys played with balls and bats; girls played with kitchen sets. Boys played with action figures; girls had dolls. The boys’ aisle was always blue or red; the girls’ aisle was all pink.
So what? Isn’t it ‘normal’ to raise boys to play with more masculine toys and adventures while girls are left to tea parties and creativity? But does the harm lie in the toy itself, or what the toy teaches our kids?
Well now, major toy brand Fisher-Price is in hot water for, well, doing the same thing they’ve always done.
For over 86 years, Fisher-Price has been a staple in the toy industry.
One of the first major brands to incorporate plastic as an easy, long-lasting, and colorful material to use for toys, Fisher-Price is best known for products like Power Wheels, Rescue Heroes, the Chatter Telephone, and especially Little People.
Sadly, it was Little People that started the latest controversy.
Little People, Big World
Known for the wide array of backgrounds, jobs, and dreams they incorporate, Little People have been an iconic childhood go-to for generations.
But when Gina Zuk Gerber was in a Toys “R” Us with her toddler, Anna, last week, however, she was disturbed with what they found on the shelf. Even her daughter was disappointed to see a “mom” figurine that came with an SUV and the slogan, “Time for yoga & a smoothie!”
Gina was used to the girls’ aisle being decked out in pink, but one thing she wasn’t okay with was a toy that had young girls aspire to nothing more than motherhood and health trends.
She wrote, “My son’s favorite toys growing up were Little People. I always just grabbed the fire truck or barn and didn’t think much about it. Today when shopping for toys for Anna I was disgusted to see the ‘girl’ versions of Little People. The only ones with all girl figures were all smothered in pink and purple, they worked in interesting places like the ‘home’, and they all lacked the multiple educational elements the ‘boys’ toys had. Then I set my eyes on this prize: ‘SUV’ and a clearly mom looking figure. Please note tagline ‘time for yoga and a smoothie’. It’s 2016 people. Fisher Price needs to step it the f up and show women working in all types of fields and in leadership roles. Ok off my soap box. Carry on with your regularly scheduled Saturday night and election bashing….”
Was Gina overreacting? Or does this small issue have big effects on our children? Keep reading.