Why Gender Matters:
What Parents and Teachers Need to Know About The Emerging Science of Sex Differences
One of the first things Leonard Sax listed in this book as a key difference between boys and girls from infancy to teenagers (his research is only up to teenage years) was the following:
Girls hear better than boys. They are more sensitive to sound, from infancy. Studies have demonstrated this from infants as young as 1 day old.
I immediately thought back to an episode of Big D’s school experience back in P2.
I happened to be chit chatting with a parent, and she commented that her daughter, who was in the same class as Big D, was afraid of their Form Teacher (Miss Z) and did not like her very much. Apparently Miss Z yelled a lot at the kids, and was very fierce and stern.
I was surprised when I heard this. Big D had never portrayed Miss Z in this way. In fact, Big D had always talked about how funny Miss Z was, and how well she engaged the class. He found her Chinese classes enjoyable, which pleased me as Chinese was (and still is) his weakest subject.
When I next raised the topic of Miss Z to Big D, I first asked him if he found Miss Z nice. He replied in the affirmative. I then asked if Miss Z ever yelled at the class (Big D had never mentioned the yelling before). Big D said “But of course”. Apparently, the yelling was quite regular, at least once a day. Next, I asked if she was fierce, he replied that he did not think so! In no way did Miss Z’s yelling make him think she was unpleasant.
I note that throughout Big D’s primary school education, Big D always prefers the male teachers to the female teachers. After I read this book, I asked him again why he preferred the male teachers. Big D said that he finds the female teachers EXTREMELY naggy (just like mommy…). They nag non stop all day long. But the male teachers just shout once very loudly to drum it in and they don’t repeat what they say. He prefers it much better that way. I also found out that Big D’s class, which is made up of 2/3 boys and 1/3 girls, behave much better in the male teacher’s, than the female teachers’ classes. Unfortunately, this year, it’s just one male teacher (Math) and 3 female teachers (English, Math and Chinese), so the class is rather chaotic throughout the day.
I wonder if the School Management could do with reading this book, and adjusting their teaching roster so that classes with a higher ratio of boys to girls can be allocated with more male teachers.