In this Ted Talk from 2016, Caroline Paul talks about teaching girls bravery.
There was a study involving a playground fire pole, ironically, in which researchers saw that little girls were very likely to be warned by both their moms and dads about the fire pole’s risk. If the little girls still wanted to play on the fire pole, a parent was very likely to assist her. But the little boys? They were encouraged to play on the fire pole despite any trepidations that they might have, and often the parents offered guidance on how to use it on their own. So what message does this send to both boys and girls? Well, that girls are fragile and more in need of help, and that boys can and should master difficult tasks by themselves. It says that girls should be fearful and boys should be gutsy.
“Bravery is learned, and like anything learned, it just needs to be practiced.”