Class 7 Civics Chapter 4 Growing up as Boys and Girls Questions and Answers (Notes)

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LRNR Classes - Class 7 Civics Chapter 4 Growing up as Boys and Girls

1. Are the statements given below true or false? Support your answer with the use of an example:

(a) All societies do not think similarly about the roles that boys and girls play.

Answer: (a) It is a true statement. In most societies, the work boys do is given more importance than the work girls do.

(b) Our society does not make distinctions between boys and girls when they are growing up.

Answer:  (b) It is a false statement. Our society makes distinctions between boys and girls even while they are in growing phase. From the very early age, boys are taught to be tough and serious, while girls are taught to be mild and soft. Boys are given toys like cars, guns to play with while girls are given dolls.

(c) Women who stay at home do not work.

Answer:  (c) It is a false statement. Women who stay at home, do a lot of household chores.
They cook food, wash clothes, sweep floor, and numerous other works; some of which are very strenuous.

(d) The work that women do is less valued than that of men.

Answer:  (d) It is true statement. Women do a lot of work. The main responsibility for housework and care-giving tasks lies with women. Yet, the work that they do with the home is not recognised as work. It is assumed that this is something that comes naturally to women. It, therefore, does not have to be paid for. This is the main reason why our society devalues women’s work.

2. Housework is invisible and unpaid work.
Housework is physically demanding.
Housework is time-consuming.
Write in your own words what is meant by the terms ‘invisible’, ‘physically demanding’ and ‘time-consuming’? Give one example of each based on the household tasks undertaken by women in your home.

1.       ‘Invisible’ means the work which is not seen from eyes or ignored, for example, the amount of time and labour that goes in preparing food.

2.       ‘Physically demanding’ means we have to do hard manual labour to complete a task. It is tiring and the hard work tells on one’s health, like fetching water or collecting firewood, washing clothes, etc., by women’s in rural areas.

3.       ‘Time-consuming’ means the work which needs considerable time to be completed. Cooking food and cleaning the house is time-consuming.

4.       Make a list of toys and games that boys typically play and another for girls. If there is a difference between the two lists, can you think of some reasons why this is so? Does this have any relationship to the roles children have to play as adults?
Answer: List of toys and games that boys play with: cars, guns, swords, buses, railway trains, lions, etc. (toys), cricket, kabaddi, hockey, football etc. (games).
List of toys and games that girls play with: dolls, cooking items, etc. (toys)’, badminton, table-tennis, hide and seek, etc. (games).
These games are also played by the boys. From the above description we can infer that there is a difference between the toys with which boys play and the toys with which girls play.
The reason behind this is that our society makes clear distinctions between boys and girls. Boys are taught to be tough while girls are taught to be mild and care giving. Boys are expected to do works which highlight their manly features but girls are expected to remain in limit with all feminine virtues. All these are ways of telling children that they have specific roles to play when they grow up to be men and women. Later in life this affects even the subjects they can study or the careers they can choose.

4. If you have someone working as a domestic help in your house or locality talk to her and find out a little bit more about her life – Who are her family members? Where is her home? How many hours does she work? How much does she get paid? Write a small story based on these details.
Yes, A Domestic Help

1.       Sujata is a domestic help. She works in our neighbour’s house.

2.       Two sons, one daughter, her husband, and herself are her family members.

3.       Her home is in Semiliguda, Koraput District, Odisha State.

4.       She works for 10 hours continuously in five different houses.

5.       She is paid ₹ 1000 per month per house. In total She earns ₹ 5000 per month.


1. What was a very important activity on the Samoan islands in the 1920s?
Answer: Fishing was a very important activity on the Samoan Islands in the 1920s.

 2. How was the girls’ school in Madhya Pradesh in the 1960s designed differently from the boys’ school?
Answer: Girls’ school had a central courtyard where girls played in total seclusion and safety from the outside world. The boy’s school had no such courtyard.

3. As these girls walked on the streets, they looked so purposeful’. What does the word ‘purposeful’ refer to?
Answer: Their only intention was to get home safe and as soon as possible.

4. Why do we give boys and girls different toys to play with?
Answer: We want to tell them that they will have different roles when they become men and women.

5. What do we teach boys and girls in their early childhood?
Answer: We teach boys that they need to be tough and masculine. On the contrary, we, teach girls that they need to be soft, mild and care giving.

6. Why did Harmeet develop a notion that her mother did not work?
Answer: In our societies, the work that women do within the home is not recognised as work. It is assumed that this is something that comes naturally to women. It is therefore, Harmeet developed such notions and said that her mother did not work

7. Why are the wages of domestic workers usually low?
Answer: It is because the work that domestic workers do, does not have much value in the eyes of society.

8. What is the daily schedule of a domestic worker?
Answer: A domestic worker’s day usually begins at five in the morning and ends at twelve in the night.

9. How are domestic workers treated by their employers?  
Answer: Domestic workers are often not treated well by their employers. Despite the hard work they do, their employers often do not show them much respect.

10. What do you mean by the term ‘double burden’?  
Answer: Several women today work both inside and outside the home. This is often referred to as ‘double burden’.

11. Housework commonly involves many different tasks. Name some of them.
Answer: Washing clothes, cleaning, sweeping, cooking, etc.

12. Why do girls like to go to school together in groups?
Answer: Girls like to go to school together in groups because in a group they feel secured.


1. What did boys do every evening, once the school was over?
Answer: Every evening, once the school was over, boys watched as hundreds of school girls crowded the narrow streets. The girls walked on the streets in groups and their only intention was to get straight home. On the contrary, the boys used the streets as a place to stand around idling, to play, to try out tricks with their bicycles. They never reached home in time.

2. Why does our society devalue the work women do inside the home?
Answer: Women discharge a lot of responsibilities inside their home. They look after the family, especially children, the elderly and sick members. They manage the entire activities so efficiently. They cook food by standing for hours in front of hot stoves, wash clothes, maintain cleanliness, etc. In rural areas, women and girls carry heavy headloads of firewood. These works are not considered as real works in our families and societies. The work that women do within the home is not recognised as work. It is assumed that this is something that comes naturally to women. Due to this fact, it does not have to be paid for. Our society devalues such work.

3. Our constitution does not discriminate between male and female. But the inequality between the sexes exists. What does the government do to remedy the situation?
Answer: The government recognises that the burden of childcare and housework falls on women and girls. This naturally has an impact on whether girls can attend school. It determines whether women can work outside the house and what kind of jobs and careers they can have. The government has set up Anganwadis or child­care centres in several villages in the country.It has passed laws that make it mandatory for organisations that have more than 30 women employees to provide creche facilities. The provision of creches helps many women to take up employment outside the home. Maternity Leave of 180 days is also given to Women. Girls have also been benefited through these provisions. More and more girls now have started attending schools.


1. Give an account of growing up in Samoa in the 1920s.
Answer: A research took place on Samoan society in the 1920s. According to the reports of the research, Samoan children did not go to school. They engaged in many different activities. They learned from their elders how to take care of children or do housework. Fishing was an important activity on the Samoan islands. Young people learned to undertake long fishing expeditions.
Both boys and girls used to look after their younger siblings. But, by the time a boy was about nine years old, he joined the older boys in learning outdoor jobs like fishing and planting coconuts. Girls had to continue looking after small children or do errands for adults until they were teenagers. They enjoyed much freedom during the teenage. After the age of fourteen or so, girls also went on fishing trips, worked in the plantations, learned how to weave baskets. Boys had to do most of the work associated with cooking. After they prepared the meal, the girls helped them.

2. Write a brief note on the lives of domestic workers with an example.
Answer: The lives of domestic workers are full of hardships. They do a lot of work in the employer’s house. They sweep and clean, wash clothes and dishes, cook different varieties of food, look after young children or the elderly. Their day usually begins at five in the early morning and ends at twelve in the night. During this span, they do not sit even for a while. Most domestic workers are women. Sometimes, even young boys and girls are employed to do all these works. Despite the hard work they do, their employers often do not show them much respect. They are often scolded by them even at a minor mistake. So far their wages are concerned, they are very low.

The reason behind this is that domestic work does not have much value. Melani is a domestic worker who leads a very hard life in spite of her hard labour. Her employer is not at all sympathetic to her. She shouts at her every now and then. She does not give her sufficient food to eat. Even during severe winters, she does not allow her to wear chappals in the house. Melani feels very humiliated. As she has no other option, she has to bear all the hardships. But she, like her employer, also wishes to be respected.

Extra Questions

Question 1: Explain the concept of 'gender roles.'

Answer: Gender roles refer to societal expectations and norms regarding behaviors, attitudes, and activities that are considered appropriate for individuals based on their perceived gender. These roles are often learned and reinforced through cultural, social, and familial influences.

Question 2: What is the significance of 'equality' in the context of gender?

Answer: Equality in the context of gender means ensuring that all individuals, irrespective of their gender, have the same rights, opportunities, and treatment. It involves challenging stereotypes and discriminatory practices, aiming for fairness and justice for both men and women.

Question 3: How does society reinforce gender stereotypes?

Answer: Society reinforces gender stereotypes through various means such as media representations, cultural practices, family expectations, and educational systems. These influences perpetuate certain beliefs about how men and women should behave, limiting individual expression and reinforcing traditional gender roles.

Question 4: Discuss the importance of 'gender equality' in society.

Answer: Gender equality is crucial for a balanced, fair, and progressive society. It ensures that everyone has access to the same opportunities, rights, and resources regardless of their gender. It fosters inclusivity, diversity, and a more just social and economic system.

Question 5: What are some steps to promote gender equality?

Answer: To promote gender equality, steps can include:

Educating and raising awareness about gender biases and stereotypes.

Encouraging equal access to education and employment opportunities for all genders.

Implementing policies and laws that prevent discrimination based on gender.

Promoting equal participation and representation in decision-making processes.

Question 6: Explain the term 'gender discrimination' and provide examples.

Answer: Gender discrimination refers to unfair treatment or prejudice against individuals based on their gender. Examples include:

Pay disparities between men and women for the same work.

Limited educational opportunities for girls compared to boys in certain societies.

Biased hiring practices that favor one gender over another.

Question 7: How can we challenge gender stereotypes in everyday life?

Answer: Challenging gender stereotypes can be achieved through various means:

Encouraging diverse role models in media and education.

Avoiding language or actions that reinforce gender norms.

Providing equal opportunities and encouragement for all genders in various activities.

Educating and fostering discussions to break down stereotypes.

Question 8: Discuss the impact of gender inequality on society and individuals.

Answer: Gender inequality negatively impacts both society and individuals. It limits economic growth, stifles creativity and innovation, and leads to social unrest. Individually, it affects mental health, self-esteem, and opportunities for personal and professional growth, causing a lack of fulfillment and potential.

Question 9: What role can education play in promoting gender equality?

Answer: Education is a powerful tool in promoting gender equality:

It helps challenge traditional beliefs and stereotypes.

It provides opportunities for both boys and girls to learn and grow equally.

Quality education empowers individuals to understand and demand their rights.

Education can lead to economic independence and better opportunities for all genders.

Question 10: How can families contribute to fostering gender equality?

Answer: Families can contribute significantly to fostering gender equality:

Encouraging equal responsibilities and opportunities for all family members.

Avoiding reinforcing traditional gender roles and stereotypes.

Promoting open discussions about gender equality and respect for all genders.

Providing equal access to resources, education, and opportunities for boys and girls.

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