How Does a Chinese Gender Prediction Chart Work?

By Kathryn Hatter
Newborn baby being held in hospital room with parents.
Newborn baby being held in hospital room with parents.

Many parents prefer not to wait until the delivery room to find out whether pink or blue will rule the nursery. Medical procedures such as amniocentesis and ultrasound can provide accurate gender information for expecting parents. Other gender predictors, such as the Chinese gender prediction chart, can be entertaining but are far less scientifically sound. You’ll need the mother’s age at birth and the month of conception to get a prediction from this ancient Chinese calendar.

Using the Chart

In keeping with ancient tradition, a Chinese gender prediction chart is divided into columns and rows. The first column is populated with numbers that reflect a range of maternal ages and the first row across the top denotes the months of the year. The body of the chart is made up of rows with cells designated "M" for male or "F" for female, as they correlate to the alignment of the age of the mother and month of conception. To use the chart, first locate your age in the vertical column at the left of the chart. Follow the horizontal row across until you reach the month when conception occurred. The cell where the column and row intersect will have an “M” for male or an “F” for female, indicating the gender prediction for the combination of mother’s age and conception month.

Preconception Play

Parents who have a gender preference before becoming pregnant might have fun using the Chinese gender prediction chart to attempt to "plan" conception to get the preferred gender. For example, if you want a boy and the mother will be 27 at the time of the birth, conceiving in March, April, June, September, November or December would result in a baby boy, according to the Chinese gender prediction chart. Again, there's no science behind this method, so use a chart for entertainment purposes only.

Calculation Issues

Although the chart is not scientific, you may have difficulty with the calculations necessary for using the chart. Determining the conception month could be tricky, especially if your fertility cycle is unusual or it varies. When using your last menstrual period date for determining conception time, count forward approximately two weeks from this date to arrive at conception. It’s possible that the last menstrual period occurred in one month and conception occurred in the next month. If the baby’s due date is near your birthday, it’s possible that you won’t be able to predict your age at birth because the baby could be born before or after the birthday.

Scientific Study Results

Eduardo Villamor, an epidemiologist with the University of Michigan, performed a study on the Chinese gender prediction chart to test its accuracy. Study results were published in the July 2010 issue of “Paediatric and Perinatal Epidemiology.” The study reviewed 2,840,755 Swedish births that occurred between 1973 and 2006, testing the Chinese gender prediction chart for accuracy. Study authors likened the Chinese gender prediction chart accuracy to tossing a coin, about 50 percent accuracy according to study results.

About the Author

Kathryn Hatter is a veteran home-school educator, as well as an accomplished gardener, quilter, crocheter, cook, decorator and digital graphics creator. As a regular contributor to Natural News, many of Hatter's Internet publications focus on natural health and parenting. Hatter has also had publication on home improvement websites such as Redbeacon.