The South Dakota Discovery Center is proud to be a Sci Girls partner. This fun, dynamic program is targeted at young girls to encourage them to be STEM-tastic!
We are offering a Sci Girls after school opportunity this winter, this time for girls in grades 3-4.
Registration is open at: http://www.sd-discovery.org/for-kids/elementary/
We recognize that parents and other important grown ups have a role in fostering girls (and boys!) interest in STEM.
These tips to encourage your daughter in STEM are courtesy PBS Parents. Joining and becoming involved in the SD Discovery Center is a good way to cover a lot of these. Don’t let lack of funds stop you. Your family may qualify for a free or reduced price membership. Contact us for more information about that.
Encourage your girl’s natural curiosity about the world. Scientists and engineers are professional question askers and problem solvers. Let your girl know that it’s perfectly acceptable not to have all the answers, and encourage her to explore and discover! Celebrate all attempts at trying new things. Even if you aren’t comfortable with STEM, be positive.
Encourage her to Pursue STEM in School
Expect girls to do well in STEM and communicate your expectations clearly. With the growing importance of science and technological literacy, it is important to spark and strengthen girls’ engagement, interest, and confidence in STEM subjects in elementary and middle school. Once in high school, your girl will make choices that will either open or close doors to STEM studies and career choices. Having a strong knowledge base in STEM topics will give your girl the opportunity to access any career path she chooses, with confidence. Help her see the connections between STEM classes and future career options. Start early!
Help Access STEM Opportunities
Great STEM learning opportunities can be found outside the classroom. Learning opportunities for kids can be found at science museums, zoos, scouting organizations, and STEM clubs during after-school hours, weekends, and summer breaks. These programs often provide girls with introductions to working female mentors who can help girls navigate the course of becoming a scientist or engineer.
Connect her to a Role Model/Mentor
Seeing women who have succeeded in STEM helps inspire and motivate girls, especially when they can relate to these role models as people with lives outside of work. Role models and mentors not only broaden girls’ views of who does science, but expand girls’ vision of what’s possible in their own lives. You can share role models with your girl by reading biographies, looking at video and text profiles online and watching tv shows (fictional and documentary) that feature female STEM role models. Talk with family, neighbors, friends and community members that work in STEM fields and ask them questions about what they do and how they got there.