March 1, 2015 | The families issue

‘Diary of a Wimpy Kid’ author opening a Plainville bookstore

Jeff Kinney will take a gamble and launch his Massachusetts retail experiment this summer. By Visi Tilak

Traditionally gender-neutral toys like building blocks now come in “boy” and “girl” versions. 

LEGO’s Friends line has been criticized for featuring hair salons and shopping malls.

illustrations by Greg Mably

The problem with separate toys for girls and boys

What started our obsession with assigning gender to playthings, and how can parents combat it? By Rebecca Hains

Learning & Earning

Open offices seem great — until you work in one

For years, this favored style of architects and CEOs has reigned supreme. Could that finally be changing? By Alyssa Giacobbe

Learning & Earning

The danger of neglecting community colleges

As a group, the 15 schools in Massachusetts have struggled. It’s time to change that. By Jon Marcus


photograph from istockphoto Brianna Wu on why Gamergate trolls won’t win

Threats are keeping my female game developers from PAX East, but they’re not going to silence us. By Brianna Wu


Finding a summer camp that fits your child’s needs

Whether your kid has allergies, autism, diabetes, or any other issue, they can still have a fun, safe adventure. By Sara Mason Ader


one caucasian teacher woman mother teenager girl discussion in silhouette studio isolated on white background Parents, you’ve been doing pep talks all wrong

But don’t worry, this sports psychologist tells you how to get them right. By Daniel McGinn

Your Week Ahead

“MOMologues” cast member Erica McDermott (“The Fighter,” “American Hustle”). // photo by L. Rafferty 5 things to do in Boston March 2 to March 7

America’s Test Kitchen Live, Climb to the Top, Oxfam Hunger Banquet, and more.


How to tune in to Red Sox spring training

Is there any surer sign that winter will one day end than the start of baseball in Fort Myers? By Emeralde Jensen-Roberts


Cheddar, bacon, and caramelized onion quiche and butternut squash salad with apple, nuts, and maple-mustard vinaigrette. 

photographs by Jim  Scherer / styling by Catrine Kelty

Recipes for a Vermont-themed brunch

The state’s classic flavors make for a tangy and sweet menu. By Adam Ried

Style Watch

Rock ‘n’ roll inspired looks at Big Night

Metallics, leather, neon, and more at the Big Brothers Big Sisters event. By Tina Sutton


Letters to the editor of the Globe Magazine

Readers respond to stories about handicap parking scofflaws, pity vs. charity, and Miss Conduct’s anniversary.