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K-8 Technology Teacher in Philadelphia, PA

Thanks for sharing the

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Thanks for sharing the resources, Samer!

K-8 Technology Teacher in Philadelphia, PA

Sounds great! I do wonder

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Sounds great! I do wonder what the head of school considers "something for girls." Good luck with everything. If you're looking for ideas on building, creating and making, you can also check out the awesome book "Invent to Learn" by Gary Stager & Sylvia Martinez. Lots of great ideas in there. Best of luck!

Community Manager at Edutopia

@krzkwi, there are a couple

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@krzkwi, there are a couple of interesting conversations about promoting STEM to girls which you might find interesting:

Women (and Girls) in STEM
http://www.edutopia.org/groups/stem-education/614991

Are We Getting Too Aggressive Promoting STEM to Girls?
http://www.edutopia.org/groups/stem-education/629561

I've been full time father

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I've been full time father for last 6 yrs, homeschooler for last 2 and my great interest is early education (early means from conception). I offered the head of the school my son is registered to (in my country you have to register children to a school when you home educate them) I can run a course for 5-10yr old kids about robotics, plastic models, building, creativity etc. She had immediately 2 questions: Will there be lego mindstorms and ... will there be anything for girls. Actually she said "ok, I agree, but there Must be something for girls". We will start beginning 2014. Your ideas are very useful. Thanks. I'll let you know what happens.

K-8 Technology Teacher in Philadelphia, PA

It definitely takes a certain

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It definitely takes a certain kind of girl to be OK with being the "only one." But it shouldn't have to be that way. One suggestion I have (you may have already done this) is to have the girls that have been successful recruit their friends. They may also have ideas for what would get more girls on board. You might also want to try some fun, crafty maker-style projects like squishy circuits or making jewelry with conductive thread (very stereotypical, I know) and try to get some girls hooked on building and making with tech.

K-8 Technology Teacher in Philadelphia, PA

Definitely, Laura. It's

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Definitely, Laura. It's important to expose girls at an early age and to help them see that you don't have to be a programmer to love robotics or other 'techie" endeavors.

Director, Antioch Center for School Renewal

As the mom of a girl who

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As the mom of a girl who would both rock at this and who will never in a million years participate, I think I can speak to at least our experience (though I would never assume to speak for all the girls out there). So much of what she chooses to do is driven by relationships and early introduction. Her brother has ALL the Legos, (No joke- my basement looks like a Lego store, except not as cool or organized) but he was also fiercely protective of them and of his creations. In spite of all our efforts, she determined that this kind of building was for Boys Only. It was only when she tied her love of art to the Legos- when they became another medium like pastels and paints and clay- that she was willing to build herself.

None of her friends build, however. She's very aware of that and, being the social creature that she is, she chooses to do different things when she's with them.

So I guess my advice would be: 1. Start thinking of STEM in terms of STEAM (Science Technology Engineering Arts and Math) and 2. Make the raw materials for robotics available to girls from an early age, and help them see the ways in which those materials intersect with their own innate interests.

Great piece!

Director of Digital Learning Services, Seguin (TX) ISD

Hi, MB, Good post-SO much

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Hi, MB,

Good post-SO much truth here! As I may have shared with you when we caught up at ISTE, I started an after-school technology program this year to let kids explore robotics, electronics, programming, etc.. We had 18 eager participants, exactly ONE of which was a wonderful, extremely bright sixth grade girl. I was surprised and disappointed. Similarly,roughly 60-65 of our 80 summer technology camp participants were boys. The girls that did attend did some of the most amazing and innovative work. As this year gets underway, I am making a point of putting extra attention towards getting our girls involved. I'm not sure what the root causes of this lack of participation are, but they are almost certainly grounded in old gender stereotypes that need to be broken. I hope some readers chime in with their own successful strategies for increasing participation by girls. I'd like to read their suggestions.

Randy

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