ZELF is a set of educational kits that aims to teach children aged 9 to 11 to learn about gender. Taking reference from the curriculum of gender education in Taiwan, ZELF is a play-based toolkit for children to freely explore their gender identity with three key components (the Face kit, the Clothing kit, the Voice kit) and a set of cards. The card deck focuses on the idea of Sex and Gender, the relationship between Gender Expression and Gender Identity.
Children often explore their gender identity by reflecting on their preferences for their appearance, choice of clothing, and voice. With gender education becoming more prominent around the world, starting gender education in an early development stage enables children to recognise the constructions of masculinity and femininity, and the associated social roles.
This educational kit offers a solution to erase gender bias and guide parents to understand their children fully while giving the child freedom to be who they really are. This kit is also an excellent tool for parents to have an open conversation about sexuality and physical autonomy with their children.
Michelle Leung is a graduate of the Hong Kong Polytechnic University majoring in Product Design. As a student born and bred in Hong Kong, she pays particular attention to gender-related issues and the outdated education and local policies around these issues. Michelle hopes to bring change through design to improve the inadequacies in the current education system and raise public awareness on gender-related issues in Hong Kong.