A gender-neutral attitude is the hallmark of a new Gungahlin childcare centre which opened this week.
The Winyu House childcare centre - the first childcare centre in an ACT government office building - will test a variety of innovative childcare theories embraced by service providers YWCA Canberra.
YWCA Canberra early childhood services manager Louise Billman said being from a feminist organisation, it was important to incorporate the gender-neutral attitude into the service.
"Our educators have already started training when it comes to the language that they use, and the provocations and experiences they provide to a child.
"We have facilities through the service for boys and girls to play with all sorts of different dolls and all sorts of dress-ups and imaginative play, regardless of their age and gender."
Ms Billman said the YWCA team had invested heavily in the fit-out.
The environment provides almost no barriers between rooms with an atelier in the centre for children to be as creative as they wish.
"We based it on an idea that came out of countries like Denmark, Sweden and Italy," she said. "The idea is that children, based on their own interest, can develop curiosity. They can walk throughout the service; there are no restrictions on where they are at."
Ms Billman said the service would revolve around a mixed-age format, to allow children to be in family groups and help build social skills with other older and younger children.
"We have a lot of ideas about how this is going to work, and make a really big impact on the children. Our commitment is to create a movement in the Canberra region. We really strongly believe that if we have a look at the early childhood development research, this is a format that will work for children and for families."
A decision was made in late 2012 to include the service at the new Winyu House building. It could influence the planning of future government buildings, which may also be required to include a childcare facility, an ACT government spokesman said.