We’re very proud to be adding to the Union’s Breaking the Mould series of resources, which support nursery and primary phase teachers to think about what books they are using in their classrooms. Using a wider range of good literature is a really quick, exciting and effective way to promote inclusion.

The NEU has produced the following supporting publications :

In this project, the National Union of Education, previously, National Union of Teachers, worked with a small group of primary schools to consider how ‘traditional’ gender stereotypes could be challenged in the classroom. The NEU worked with five primary schools to consider how ‘traditional’ gender stereotypes could be challenged in nursery and primary classrooms. The project quickly acquired the name Breaking The Mould. The five schools were provided with support and training

The Breaking the Mould project team helped the school staff begin their planning by providing them with a range of children’s books which help challenge gender stereotypes.  In the course of the project, the schools developed different and creative activities and approaches but also common themes emerged.

In schools, just as in wider society, we tend to stress the differences between girls and boys far more than the similarities. We need to think of children as individuals and try not to impose expectations on them linked to gender. We can begin by making small changes to the ways in which we constantly differentiate the sexes – such as referring to ‘children’ rather than ‘girls and boys’ and not marshalling pupils in single sex lines.

Breaking the Mould series of resources

Using these books, and the teaching notes for each title, will open up straightforward ways to talk with children about different kinds of families and relationships.

Some of these publications refers to the NUT as it was originally a publication of the National Union of Teachers, which has since become the National Education Union.

  • LGBTplus
    Every child, every family

    This resource will help you to promote LGBT+ inclusion through reading. It’s designed to help you include every child and make sure every child has ways to see their family and relatives represented positively in their school.

  • Equality
    Stereotypes stop you doing stuff

    This provides an overview of how the different schools looked at the impact of gender stereotypes on young people and considered how they could begin to unsettle some of the established assumptions about what girls and boys might like or do.

  • Equality
    Boys' things, girls' things

    This booklet contains examples of how staff worked to challenge gender stereotypes both inside and outside the classroom as well as specific examples of practice from the project schools.

  • Equality
    It's child's play

    It’s Child’s Play is a resource for teachers to use in class every day.. It contains a set of accompanying notes on the project books and how to use them, plus more information on using children’s literature to challenge gender stereotypes.