Is There a Difference Between Male and Female Teachers?

Posted on May 18, 2010. Filed under: cultural, educational, personal, reflection, teaching and learning |


Are there specific differences between male and female teachers?  Are male teachers needed more in elementary classrooms than female teachers?  Do males have different teaching styles than females? If so, is nature or nurture the cause?  These are some of the questions I asked when I did a survey last year for my Women in Education class.

The majority of people I asked believe we need more male teachers.  There were a variety of reasons behind this, but one of the dominant reasons was because it is assumed that males command more respect from classrooms and provide balance in a female dominated workplace.

As I was doing this study, I was hearing a lot of interesting opinions and assumptions about education.  Have you ever thought about your own thoughts on this matter?  Gender roles can be discussed in any and every context, but I want to talk about them in an educational context.  Where do men and women fit?  Why is there a general trend that elementary teachers tend to be female- especially in early childhood?  Is it a women’s job to look after the children?  Some might say that women are way better at it then men- is this true?

I want to revisit this topic to see if my opinions have changed from a year ago, but I also want to hear your opinions on the matter. Check out the link below for my powerpoint presentation from last year.

View more presentations from bahslerd.
Some quotes from people surveyed: “We need proportional representation of both male and female teachers.  Currently there tends to be limited incentives to encourage this.  School systems reinforce the status quo.  The current practice needs to change in order for this [more males in ECE classrooms] to change.” -Male educator
“Young boys and girls need to have positive male role models in their lives, and I think seeing men in different roles, (roles traditionally held by women) will help both genders disregard stereotypes.” -Female educator
“I believe that a male commands more from children than a female may, and when used responsibly I believe it can be more influential, perhaps more inspirational.” – Male educator
“I think that it is good for the younger students, namely boy students, to have someone to relate to starting at an early age.” – Female educator
So, do you agree? Do you believe there is a misrepresentation of male teachers in education?  The (fairly feminist) professor from my class seems to think that we do not need anymore male teachers in the schools, and that assuming we do means that you are using a gender stereotype to assume that a male educator can do something that a female educator cannot.  Can males “outperform” females in certain areas of education and vice versa? We know that men and women are different, but what is the difference, if any, between male and female teachers?
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4 Responses to “Is There a Difference Between Male and Female Teachers?”

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I had my first male teacher in grade 3, and didn’t have another until highschool. I’d have to think a bit more on the subject in order to articulate it further, but I can definitely attest to wanting to impress him for different reasons than I did for my female teachers – before or after. It was a motivational year.

okay lets get something str8t are male teachers better than female teachers.

Don’t think teachers are usually role models of any kind. I’ll admit some are respectable enough, but a school teacher… likely isn’t there because they were amazing at something… For the dedicated and talented few that have talent and a passion for it… Those are going to be a rare case anyway.

Besides, schools are a neutered environment. What good would having a male teacher do when he has no freedom to teach in his own style?

[…] The point is that I have been learning and growing ever since. Sometimes I have successful tech moments where a video I made or something I shared really impacts people or gets a lot of hits, (like this post I created on the difference between male and female teachers) […]


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