Bright Side

New Experiment: What Happens When Boys and Girls Study Separately for 3 Years


Boys and girls start playing different games and even begin to think differently as early as kindergarten. Nevertheless, requirements for both genders in schools are the same. And that's the reason why certain schools in Russia started an unusual experiment.

Bright Side wants to tell you about this interesting school experiment and what the results were.

School #34 in Kamensk-Uralsky City in Russia shared the first results of an experiment that was started in 2014. The teachers of these experimental classes are convinced that this type of education is better for kids.

In this experiment, boys and girls received separate educations but had mixed-gender social activities, which means they stayed separate only during lessons. The rest of the time like during breaks, in the cafeteria, on excursions and in extra-curricular activities, kids of both genders communicated with each other. After graduating from primary school, the classes are to join, so that the communication between all kids will be real, not just through social media. Secondary school is a time when close friends are made, as well as important choices, helping to form kids' personalities. Obviously, this is a very important stage in their lives.

In many schools with separate classes, boys' classes try to focus on sports such as hockey and involve more male teachers so that boys have adult men to look up to. These teachers run courses in the fundamentals of health and safety, or they're P.E. teachers or sports coaches. Here, it is quite difficult to find a man who fits the role of principal.

For girls, teachers organize lessons in choreography and needlework.

Boys and girls get distracted by each other.

Psychologists are well aware that if there are representatives of the opposite sex among the students, then any boy or girl, even unconsciously, will try to impress each other. Therefore, they'll get distracted from the lesson. As a result, the lesson will fail as kids are unable to concentrate.

The masculinity of boys gets broken in primary school.

Both parents and scientists know that young boys tend to lag 2-3 years behind their female peers both mentally and physically. Their brains' left hemisphere matures more slowly. That's why the educational system in schools is oriented toward girls. It can be quite shameful and humiliating if everyone is laughing at you while you are answering in front of the whole class. That's how the loser complex starts to develop and as a result, aggression toward classmates and adults develops too.

It's natural for boys to aspire to take risks, test their willpower and spirit, be heroes, and make decisions for themselves. But can you grow up to be a strong man if you are constantly asked to repeat ready solutions and sit quietly?

Girls like specifics and clear algorithms.

In classes separated by gender, it's easier for teachers to take into consideration the psychology of the two different groups. Girls are shy and accurate in learning. Details and the process itself are important to them. Though they are good at accomplishing typical tasks, fulfilling them according to the given algorithm while feeling shy among a class full of boys can sometimes be difficult for girls.

In the absence of boys, girls feel that they can think more freely, and are not afraid to raise their hands or make mistakes. They are more willing to help each other without worrying about being mocked.

Boys follow their own path instead of rules and ready solutions.

Boys should learn lessons themselves. They don't accomplish tasks step by step, they try to find the solutions themselves. They want to make up the rules based on what a teacher says. That's why every task is an adventure for them. Their perception is more holistic, imaginative, and emotional. Boys like problematic issues and they get actively involved in finding solutions and love being the first to find them.

Girls are made for "collective" tasks.

In these experimental classes, girls tended to be good at accomplishing collective tasks. They set roles right away, discussed their task at hand and found the solution together. However, they did behave shyly and indecisively in accomplishing individual tasks even if they knew the right answer.

Also, teachers noticed that girls should always be praised, even for their mistakes. Otherwise, they'd become closed off and would feel scared to answer in the future. Boys don't understand such a method.

Boys realize their leadership qualities in all-male classes.

In the absence of girls, boys didn't hesitate to express their thoughts, even if it went against the generally accepted norm. And though excessive noise and shoutouts are a usual occurrence in the classroom, teachers still noticed that boys were less aggressive in these experimental classes. Every young boy tries to affirm himself in front of girls. While in these classes, all pupils are equal and his attempts to affirm himself can be directed to developing leadership qualities.

One more interesting note to take into consideration was that all boys behaved dignifiedly. Students that were in mixed-gender classes tended to fight one another, while in the experimental classes, the boys were more likely to help one another.

Respect for teachers is higher in single-gender classes.

In single-gender classes, girls are easier to connect with and boys are less likely to argue with teachers because there is no one around them they care to impress. It may take time to find the right approach, but sooner or later the student will become devoted to their teacher.

One of the teachers shared an experience they had in the classroom. Once, the teacher forgot to remind the boys to clean the classroom. When the next day she saw that they had cleaned the classroom themselves, the boys said, "Don't worry about that, we are quite mature already!"

Children's health and posture were better in separate classes.

The Head of the Department of Pediatrics of the Amur Medical Academy named Elena Romantsova noted that it's not only the kids' psyches that had improved but their health improved as well. In male classes, boys didn't slouch. A health checkup conducted by health professionals showed that children became less likely to get sick in single-gendered classes.

It was also noted that in mixed-gender classes children would tend to lose weight within the first 6 months of their studies, which was the result of stress and adaptation. That doesn't happen in separate-gender classes.

The number of pupils with good marks has significantly increased in separate classes.

"Boys and girls are interested in different things," said V.F.Bazarniy in his interview. "Whenever I read them the same fairytale, girls would get impressed by one type of image, sense or feeling, while boys were impressed with different things. A teacher can't hold the attention of all the kids in mixed classes, so they have to make kids do this or that task by forcing them to do so. Obedience, discipline, and punishment with bad marks become a priority. Unfortunately, that's how most schools work. Before the separation, there were about 3% of pupils with 'A' grades. After the separation, this number increased by 8-10 times."

According to the estimates from the school No. 2120 where gender education in the primary school had also been introduced, the indicator of the quality of education was 74% for girls and 67% for boys. This is a big reason why single-gender classes where kids could master one type of curriculum were created. By studying separately, kids learn more effectively.

The experiment was a success, although it has issues.

This separated method of studying has supporters but it also has people who oppose it. Some people believe that this is a step backward if we consider puberty. The principal responded to this concern by saying that the problem actually occurs from an excess of common activities. In Russia, the number of pregnant schoolgirls has increased and that is what we should actually be worrying about.

Some people say it's the first step toward racism and segregation through mental and physical traits. There is also an opinion that male classes are a good environment for raising future maniacs. The experiment of parallel and separate studying suggests the opposite, and no attacks have been able to stand up to criticism thus far. After all, kids communicate quite a lot outside the classroom.

Would you want your child to study in a class like this? What do you think of this idea? Please share your opinion with us in the comments!

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