One day last week, our five-year-old brought home the evening's first-grade homework—"decodables" books 29 and 30 from the Open Court Reading series—and my wife and I were like, huh?
Had the textbook publishers failed to make progress on gender roles since the Dick and Jane books of our childhood? Open Court is a phonics program published by SRA/McGraw-Hill and used to teach reading in elementary schools across America, including California, where we send our kids to the Oakland public schools.
To be fair, it's possible we may encounter instances of women in the workplace and men doing housework elsewhere in the series. But having these two books come home simultaneously brought me back to the days of feathered hair, puka shells, and John Travolta in a white disco suit.
Just look at these pages from "Best Mom" and "Jeff's Job."