What is Gender? A resource for kids, families and teachers.


We are so pleased to share a new learning resource with you. Building from the original Genderbread Person graphic by Bruce Lawson, and the awesome Gender Unicorn graphic by Trans Student Educational Resources — Thrive has created a modified version specifically for younger kids, families and teachers to better understand what gender is and to explain some basic terminology. The focus is on gender only and uses neutral, easy to understand language. It is intended for kindergarten aged kiddos and beyond, and can serve as a resource to answer common questions from students and parents of all ages.

A printable PDF is available here.

You are welcome to share this resource freely — please share unedited and for no commercial gain.

Thank you to the many members of the community who provided critique and feedback to make this resource better. This was created by a parent of a young trans kiddo and through it’s development we engaged with many parents of gender non-conforming kids, teachers, trans & non-binary identifying kids and adults, social workers, educators and kids of a variety of different ages and the response was amazing. We appreciate your participation and perspectives so very much.


A little history. Queer and trans organizers have been making the distinction between gender identity, gender presentation/expression, sex, and attraction for decades. This is not an original concept from Thrive — just a modification for younger ages. Here are some articles about the original sources here and here. For teens and adults we highly recommend using the Gender Unicorn graphic as a teaching aid — available from TSER’s website here.


There is always room for improvement. Thrive welcomes constructive feedback on how to strengthen this document - please email feedback to: hello@thrivekc.org