Getting Girls Interested In STEM: What Can You Do?
While STEM appeals to millennials, there is a strong need to pass enthusiasm onto the young female demographic. Considering the fact that STEM-- in all its versatile manifestations, like product innovations, data analytics, e-commerce and wearables, among other areas-- is the future of all facets of life, it is imperative for girls to become digital natives.
So, How Do You Get Girls Involved in STEM
All facets of learning are interesting for girls until they enter the pre-puberty age (8-10) where their interest in STEM begins to wane. Encouraging and applauding their interest in innovation and integration of STEM into their tasks will result in keeping the interest growing instead of waning.
In addition, use female role models who are using STEM in accomplishing their everyday career expectations to influence their view of the digital space. From actresses and fashion models to their teacher who can create a fantastic website for their photography group, these women can leave a positive in print in the minds of the girls. If it is possible, formulate a mentorship program where such women can work one on one with the girls and further influence their interest in STEM.
If you can afford it, choose private school education for your young children. The direct, personal input of teachers can encourage girls to pursue their interests in science. Building confidence through positive reinforcement is critical, and it's more likely to happen in the more personal setting of private education, where teachers have more time to spend per student.
Partner STEM and Their Hobbies
There are various gender specific hobbies that can incorporate STEM allowing it to make an impact on growing children. Hobbies that can be used to create an interest in STEM include fashion, beauty and interior décor among other things.
Showing how STEM affects their favorite activities will enable girls to easily embrace, integrate, innovate, and learn more about it resulting in finding real life solutions in the digital world.
Use Extra-Curricular Avenues
Understandably, certain STEM applications are not part of the regular school curriculum. Parents, guardians and teachers should use avenues outside the school setup to nurture STEM interest in girls. For example, if your daughter is interested in photography, find a photography exhibition that has incorporated interesting STEM applications and visit.
You can also find courses in computer programming or coding, online or at a local computer learning facility. Doing this will ensure that the STEM education gap is filled and the interest is maintained for the long haul.
Girls engaging with technology is a imperative because it is present in all career paths one can think of today. Just make it a part of their everyday life and they will soon see it as an integral part of their life's path.