“In elementary school, 74% of girls say they are interested in math and science classes. But women only make up about 26% of STEM workers. Why is that?” questions Time journalist Erin Dockterman in the article “Chelsea Clinton: Schools Need to Support Girls in STEM“. In an effort to increase greater participation in a historically male dominated field, schools, like Caruso Middle School are encouraging girls and boys to take more math and science classes like Science Technology Engineering Math class also known as STEM.
With our newly designed STEM lab (thanks to Creative Learning Systems) Caruso and Shepard Middle Schools (both DPS109 middle schools) have created a learning environment that encourages exploration and innovation. When speaking with many of our CMS students, they often light up with excitement about what they are going to learn in the first quarter of STEM.
Amidst this excitement, as educators, we need to continue to find ways that girls can, “…overcome obstacles… by finding female peers with similar interests. That’s why [programs like] Made With Code also aims to give girls the resources to find camps and programs where girls can build communities of support. “ ‘It’s so important that girls and young women have peer support—even if enabled by social media…’ ” says Clinton” (Dockterman).
To further support girls in STEM, the American Association of University Women and Praxair have teamed up to offer a tech savy girls workshop (grades 6-9) at the Illinois Institute of Technology, Rice Campus on Saturday, November 15 from 8:30-3:30 pm (more information can be found below). This workshop is designed as a STEM hands-on workshop where girls will meet other women in the STEM field and learn more about STEM. We encourage parents and students to check out this program. Space is limited, but more information can be found at http://janeaddams-il.aauw.net (Online Registration required).