Similarities and Differences

In your class you will have many similarities with others but also many differences.

One of the most obvious differences between you and your friends will be that some are boys, some are girls, you all look different, you sound different, your family background is different and your ability is different.

Similarities could be age, interests, hobbies, likes, dislikes etc. There will be lots of things that you have in common with your friends. You go to the same school and you might live in the same area. You might support the same football team or go to the same swimming pool.

In schools today we treat boys and girls equally, however this was not always the case.

Children were often split for certain subjects. Boys played football and learnt to do wood work, girls did needlework and learned to cook. This would not be accepted in schools today because males and females have equal rights.

Years ago there were only firemen, now women can be fire fighters too. Similarly, nurses were mainly women, but now men can be nurses too. This is gender equality.

Who does the majority of work in your home?

Traditionally it was the mummy that did all the housework, in fact years ago women commonly stayed at home to look after children and to cook and clean. In more recent years women have challenged this view and have gone back into the workplace after becoming a parent. In many homes now, the daddy might stay at home while mummy goes out to work.

In our society there are many other differences as well as gender.

These include: Cultural differences, disabilities, religion and race for example.

In Northern Ireland today there are many people from various different countries around the world. They all have different religious beliefs, traditions and political beliefs. Like children in your class, there are many similarities and differences. What is important is that we celebrate these differences and respect them. It’s OK to be different from each other.

Some people have different needs however, so we need to take needs into consideration.

Today we try to accommodate those physically less able. We leave spaces in public car parks close to the door for disabled users. In stadiums and at concerts there are more accessible spaces where their view cannot be obstructed etc.

Foods from different cultures



Spaghetti is a very common food today but it original came from Italy

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Do you understand the difference in equality and fairness?

Equality is everyone getting the same.

Fairness is everyone getting what they need.

We are all different and have different needs. Do what you can to ensure everyone is treated fairly.