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Don’t Judge a Book by its Cover

Stereotypes are ideas about how people will act that are based on certain qualities, like the colour of their skin, their gender or other groups they belong to. Challenge your thinking while discussing different gender stereotypes and why these stereotypes may be unfair and harmful.

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  • What do you need to complete this activity? 
  • How much time will you need for this activity? 
  • How many words will you find definitions for? 


  • Create a list of different words or characteristics that could be used to describe a person. 
  • Look at the list of characteristics and words and sort them into categories that are for “boys”, “girls”, and “both”. 
  • Talk about why you believe that these characteristics should belong in the categories you chose. 
  • As a group or in smaller groups, talk about why it could be harmful to stereotype these words and characteristics. 
  • Based on what you have learned about how stereotypes can be harmful, create a list of words to write definitions for (ex. Stereotype, identity, character, personality) 
  • Create the definitions and share them with the group. 
  • Talk about what the definitions mean and how they relate to your daily life. 


  • What do you know now that you did not know before?  
  • How did you and your friends get along on this Adventure?  
  • What would you change next time?  
  • What did you learn about stereotypes? 
  • How can you avoid stereotypes in your daily lives? 
  • Remember to submit your activities on our Scouts for Sustainability Take Action Map

Keep it Simple

  • Using a dictionary, look up some words (identity, gender, etc.) and discuss the definition and what you think it means. Would you change them in any way? 

Take it Further

  • Write a list of stereotypical things that describe a boy or a girl. Discuss why these lists can be harmful and think of ways that you can challenge these stereotypes in your life. 
  • Learn more about gender identities other than male and female. What do you already know about people who are nonbinary, genderfluid or agender? How do these identities fit into our stereotypes about gender?