Looking Through
The Eyes
Boys and Girls
Dan Hodgins
Girls see the details of
The Crockus is
Four times larger
than boys.
Boys Brains see the whole
but not the details
34%of preschool children last year were expelled and 87% of them were
50% of eighth grade boys are more likely to be held back a grade
Boys are 6 times more likely to be “misdiagnosed” with ADD or ADHD
Boys are 4 times more likely to be labeled needing special education
Boys are 7 times more likely to be labeled with reading or language delays
Boys are more likely not to complete high school
Boys are 4 times more likely to commit suicide
62% of the schools last year removed recess time
51% of the schools last year removed talking during lunch time
Dobler, 2005)
Core of Your Brain
Boys have a thicker skull
Skull Development
Toddlers have a thick
skull for protection.
Normally as the child
increases in age
his/her skull
decreases in
The skull for males
does not decrease in
Boys Brains can be 12 –
18 months behind in
A boy’s brain develops from
the back (the doing part)
towards the front (the
thinking part)
Girl’s brain develops more from
front to back. So, boys develop
motor skills, their physical
abilities, before they start to
think about them.
If boys are 12 – 18 months
behind are we?
Using appropriate
strategies in the
classroom for their
developmental level?
Using appropriate
assessments based on
their level not their age?
Girls develop complex
verbal skills one year
All Learning Must go
through the Corpus
Callosum. It is a
connection of cognition and
Girls Corpus Callosum is
3 times larger
According to Richard
Lapchick, author of
Baseball and your Boy,
warns that “most
coaches, who are male,
lack even rudimentary
knowledge of the
emotional, psychological,
social and physical needs
of children.”
Sam and Abdul were playing together
in the block area building an airport
for their toy planes.
Sam pretended to land one
of the planes and mistakenly
knocked over the airport ‘tower’.
Abdul yelled at him, “You dummy.
You knocked over the tower!”
Boys develop “sensory
overload” earlier
Sensory Stressors:
Walls covered with “stuff”
Environments that are filled
with too many choices
Signs that say “Be nice to your
friends”; “Use Kind Words”;
“Safety comes first, no
Girls brains are always
Boys brains
go into pause
state after
completing a task
“Channel Surfing”(Ruben Gur)
Males often “zone out” in front of
the TV, channel-surfing and
not stopping for any long term
engagement. They are
channel surfing as a form of
Females, on the other hand, more
often stop surfing at a drama
that involves senses in which
people are talking or otherwise
in interaction and relationship.
Washing Hands for Boys
Turn on water
Soap on hands
Rinse off soap
Turn off water
Dry hands
Pause Breakers:
Boys Respond Better to
Loud Voices
If boys respond to loud
Why are we always saying
“use your inside voice”?
Girls have more sensory
awareness especially
through touch
Girls are better at using their
senses to assist in memory
development. Especially
through their fingertips and
Boys work better in
temperatures 10 degrees
lower than girls
Boys work better with bright
lights, girls work better with
dim lights
Girls Sing in Tune more
Boys are better at short
term memory, girls are
better with long term
Boys don’t
remember what you
have told them.
Each time an
incidence happens,
it’s as if it never
happened before.
Communication Patterns:
55% facial
38% voice tone
7% voice alone
Girls by 5 years of age
5,000 – 7,000 words
Boys by 5 years of age
3,000 – 5,000 words.
Males emotional response is
on the right side of his brain,
while the power to express his
feelings in speech lies over on
the left side.
Because the two halves are
connected by a very small corpus
callosum, the flow of information
between one side of the brain and
the other is more restricted.
Girls use words as soon
as they hear them……
Talking to Yourself
increasing cognition by
Boys work out
Boys relate language
with action…..
Stop the Pretzel
Dirty Bill
I know a man named Dirty Bill
He lives in a house on garbage hill
Never took a bath and never will
Yuk! Yuk! Old Dirty Bill.
You catch him, you snatch him
You throw him in the tub
You turn on the water
And you scrub, scrub, scrub
You catch him, you snatch him
You throw him in the sink
You scrub off the dirt
And the stink, stink, stink!
Peee yewwww!!!!
67% of Boys are Visual
Kindergarten Song
Friends, friends, one, two, three
All my friends are here with me
You’re my friend; you’re my friend; you’re my
friend, you’re my friend
Friends, Friends one two three all my
friends are here with me.
Boys Song In
Boogers, boogers, one, two, three
All my boogers are here with me.
Here’s one booger, here’s one booger,
here’s one booger, here’s one booger
Boogers, boogers, one, two, three
All my boogers are here with me!
Yankee Doodle
Yankee Doodle
Went to town
A riding on a spider
Stuck an apple up his
And peed apple cider.
English and Social Studies Assignment for
Seventh Graders – The Write Source 2000
Do you often compare yourself to someone
else? “Sometimes”
Do you compare to make yourself feel better?
“No, I do not”
Do your comparisons make you feel inferior?
Writing for Boys:
Usually includes
Less details
Larger space needed
Often relates to
present tense
Writing on the go!
Researchers discovered that girls
become better spellers if they first
say each word and letter before they
spell it, and then repeat each letter
as they write it.
Called “simultaneous oral spelling”
Selecting Books for Boys
Does the book encourage acting
it out?
Do the pictures suggest
Are there action words?
Do the pictures have less detail?
Can boys identify with the main
Does it reflect different ages,
race and abilities?
Is there a beginning, middle and
Make Sure Literacy
Activities are
Talking and writing
about “Poop” is not
just a word but a
major life experience
for boys…….
Get Over IT.
Books for boys:
Arnold, Ted
Barrett, Jodi
Cooke, Trish
Davis, Aubrey
Downey, Lynn
Feiffer, Jules
Fox, Mem
Horswarth, Werner
Geroghty, Paul
Ginsburg, Mira
Grossman, Bill
James, Simon
MacDonald, Elixabeth
Naylor, Phyllis
Flourde, Lynn
Steig, William
Things that are the most
So much
The enormous potato
The fees sneeze
Bark George
Tough Boris
The Mole in Search
Look out Patrick
Clay Boy
My Little Sister Ate one Hare
The Wild Woods
The Wolf is Coming
The king of the playground
Pigs in the mud
Pet’s a Pizza
Computer Use for Boys
Jane Healy, Failure to Connect
Attention span problems
may be due to early brain
attachment to mechanical
Imagination functions of the
brain, do not grow as richly
Reading and writing
functions and verbal skills
develop more slowly if
young brains are
mechanized too early
Group Dynamics
Cooperative learning is easier for girls
to master in the early years
Boys tend to focus on performing the
task well, without as much sensitivity
to the emotions of others around them
Girls form looser organizations
Boys spend less time than girls
managing the team process, they
quickly pick leaders and focus on goal
Girls in Groups:
Congregate in groups
more often
Engage in talking
Greet newcomers warmly
Primarily interested in
Have a harder time
saying goodbye or
making closures
Personal Responses:
At four months old, most baby girls can distinguish
photographs of people they know from
photographs of strangers, boys usually cannot.
A one week old baby girl can distinguish a baby’s
cry from a background of general noise of a
similar volume. Baby boys cannot.
Boys in Groups
Occupy large space during
Engage in rough and vigorous
Ignore newcomers
More bodily contact
Primarily interested in objects
Less time to say goodbye or
putting closures
Inclusion in Groups
Boys tend not to bother about
whether or not they like any
particular member of the
group-he’s included if he’s
Girls exclude other girls
because “they’re not nice”.
Girls know and remember the
names of their playmates; boys
don’t often
For boys all learning is:
If it is not in the body it
is not in the
For girls
if it is not in the voice it
is not in the
Chris Is His Name
Chris is his name and pushing is his game
You can catch him pushing in the sun and
He’ll be pushing high, he’ll be pushing low
He’ll be pushing, pushing, wherever he
So if you want some pushing and you don’t
know what to do
Baby Shark
Baby shark, doot, doot, doot, doot, doot, doot
Baby shark, doot, doot, doot, doot, doot, doot
Mother shark, doot, doot, doot, doot, doot, doot
Mother shark, doot, doot, doot, doot, doot, doot
Daddy shark, doot, doot, doot, doot, doot, doot
Daddy shark, doot, doot, doot, doot, doot, doot
Grandpa shark, doot, doot, doot, doot, doot
Grandpa shark, doot, doot, doot, doot, doot
Sharks swim, doot, doot, doot, doot, doot
Sharks swim, doot, doot, doot, doot, doot
Sharks attack, doot, doot, doot, doot, doot
Sharks attach doot, doot, doot, doot, doot
Chocolate Candy
Chocolate Candy and Jelly Beans
Put them in my pocket and put them in my jeans.
Mommy washed the clothes and this is what she
Chocolate candy and jelly beans all over the
washing machine.
Testosterone Spikes
Boys can have 2 – 10 spikes
per hour depending on age
 Girls usually have 2 spikes a
 Boys spikes are more
common in the morning
 Girls spikes are more
common in late afternoon or
 Boys release physical
tension during a spike
 Boys react with energy or
erections or both
Style of interaction
 Physical greeting
 Common during a spike
 Nurturing
 No correlation between
roughhousing and
 Game playing
 Allows a child the
pleasure of using his own
 Non-verbal
Types of Roughhousing
Running into boxes
Running through newspaper
Motorboat, motorboat
Capes, nets, ropes
High fives
Pushing and shoving
Butt pushes
Quick and Easy Physical
Activities for Boys
Sky pulling
Sky writing
Lazy eights
Ear openers
Feet movements
Mouth stretchers
Boys gain control by
being Physical
Vivian Paley, Boys and
Girls: Superheroes in the
Doll Corner, 1984 wrote:
Luke Skywalker and Darth Vader have the
same domination as Mothers and
Princesses. Boys play as Darth Vader
involves lots of conflict and action. Girls
play as mother and princesses involves
lots of pesty characters that have tantrums,
sisters quarrel, babies cry and mothers
threaten and spank.
Girls gain control by
talking about it
Art for Boys:
Rubber band two or three
brushes together
Rubber band swatches
Horse brush painting
Massage instrument painting
Dropping socks filled with sand
onto paint
Bottle brush painting
Plunger painting
Movement Props for Boys
Arm stretchers
 Towel dancing
 Bag movements
 Newspaper toss
 Sword fighting (swimming
 Capes
 Broom handle music
 Scooters
 Marshmallow shooters
What Do Boys Need?
A variety of movable
Lots of space
Visual routine
Lower temperatures
Power play
Boxes for kicking
School Rules for Boys
 Jump
 Dig to China
 Explore
 Talk
 Build higher then your
 Tear down
 Pour
 Yell
 Paint
 Imagine
 Measure
 Ponder
 Daydream
 Lead
 Be alone
Visual Cues for Beginning,
Middle and End
Activities for Girls in the Classroom
Digital cameras (taking
pictures of themselves
and others)
Use teams more
Small motor toys
Personalize spaces
Talking tubes
“Feeling games”
Books about feelings
Dramatic play (helping
Harford Heights Elementary
School, the largest elementary
school in Maryland, have
experimented with same sex
classrooms since the mid-nineties
The all boy classrooms
encourage natural
competitiveness and highspiritedness. “The boys
become competitive rather than
Feelings - Girls
Use emotion and cognition to
solve problems
Girls talk about their feelings
Girls demonstrate empathy
Girls see consequences faster
Process pain and hurt more
Seek out assistance faster
Enjoy cooperative activities
Feelings - Boys
Release feelings in quick
burst of energy
Has delayed reactions to
Project feelings to outside
Go into “cave”
Boys do not talk about
their feelings
Boys respond to empathy
when it is part of a task
Boys can become
assertive or withdrawn
Girls may be shame-sensitive,
boys are shame-phobic; they
see it has “loss of face” and will
do just about whatever it takes
to avoid shame.
William Pollack, Real Boys
Boys Do Not Talk About
Their Feelings
Empathy in boys must
be demonstrated by a
physical action
Bonding and Attachment
Must Occur Before the
Child Turns Five!
James Garbarino
Infant boys are cuddled,
talked to, and breast fed for
significantly shorter periods
of time than infant girls.
Michael Gurian, A Fine Young
Punishing the
dominant child, as we
often do, may need to
be rethought. We are
in fact, punishing him
for being healthy.
Thomas Boyce, University of
California, Berkeley
Girls often bully by
calling names, or
telling stories
Boys often bully by
using physical force
Discipline For Boys:
Only talk about what you want them to do
Allow for physical outlets of emotion
Provide role playing
Remember that sometimes boys are louder and give
orders, ignore often
Provide “caves” for cooling down
Provide roughhousing opportunities
Empathy must be related to a physical task
Visual guidance
Pirate Song
When I was one, I had some fun
On the day I went to sea
I jumped aboard a pirate ship
And the captain said to me
Go this way, that way, forward, backwards
Over the deep blue sea.
James Garbarino Says:
 Boys
need stability
 Boys
need security
 Boys
need affirmation and acceptance
How Do Your Create?
 Stability:
 Security:
 Affirmation/Acceptance:
How are you going to
create a feeling of
Researchers demonstrated
that the largest major factor
protecting young people from
emotional distress, drug abuse,
and violence-other than the
closeness they were able to
achieve within their families – was
“perceived school connectedness”
Protecting Adolescents from
Harm 1997.
What supports are you
missing in your
classroom or school?
Where will you begin?
Side Effects of Attending This
Hallucinations of men who “feel”
Create more space for roughhousing
Hair loss
Compulsion to say “your in pause”
A strong desire to become a pirate
An urge to tell some male, “so that’s why you behave
that way?”
Better teaching
Resources on Boys
Caron, A. Strong Mothers, Strong Sons. New York: Harper, 1994
Goleman, D. Emotional Intelligence. New York, Bantam, 1995.
Gurian, Michael. The Wonder of Boys. New York: Tarcher/Putman, 1996
Gurian, Michael. Girls and Boys Do Learn Differently. New York: Tarcher/Putman,
Healy, Jane. Failure to Connect. Simon & Shuster, 2000
Kipnis, A. Angry Young Men. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, 1999.
Kohn, A.
What to Look for in a Classroom. San Francisco, Jossey-Bass, 1998.
Manthey, J. Creating Gender Friendly Schools. Peraluma, Calif, 1998.
Moir A. & Jessel, D. Brain Sex. New York: Dell, 1990
Nash, J.M. Fertile Minds, Time, Feb. 3, 1997, ppg. 49-56.
Pollack, William. Real Boys. New York: Random House
Rimm, S.
See Jane Win. New York: Three Rivers, 1999
Schicandanz, J. More then ABC’s.
Sommers, C.. The War Against Boys. New York: Simon & Shuster, 2000.

What About Those Boys?