STEM programs provide vital skills and training for kids of all ages. But, for girls, getting them involved is especially important. Why? Because right now, women are not evenly represented in the STEM field. Statistics show that women make up only 22% of computer and information systems jobs while only one in seven is an engineer in Canada.
Getting girls involved now can put more women in STEM jobs in the next twenty years. Besides thinking to the future, there are other ways to draw interest in STEM programs for girls. Let’s take a look at ways to do this as well as the benefits.
Ways to Draw Interest in STEM Programs for Girls
Some girls may brush off STEM programs because they think that they’re not interesting enough or that that they’re just not for them. But, there are ways to reverse that thinking.
1. Show Them the Potential That Exists.
Show girls what they can do with the skills they learn from a STEM program. Explain the technology that can be created as well as the infrastructure that exists because of STEM programs. By showing girls that STEM produces tangible and useful projects, they may have a greater tendency to want to get involved.
2. Introduce Them to Women in STEM
Seeing that there are women who are thriving in the STEM field, may make them want to try STEM programs for girls. By meeting with real-life people, they can see first-hand how women make things happen. Reading about them is great, but getting those one-on-one lessons are priceless.
3. Visit STEM-Related Museums
Another way to make STEM appealing to girls is by visiting museums and other exhibits that show STEM in action. For many children, seeing is believing. When they see STEM in action, they may be more likely to want to try some activities out for themselves.
Benefits of STEM Programs for Girls
There are many benefits of getting young women interested in STEM programs for girls. These include:
1. Boosts Self-Esteem
All kids need to believe in themselves to succeed. Statistics show that may be more difficult for girls than boys. Statistics show that a girls’ self-confidence level drops 30% between the ages of 8 and 14. Some of this may have to do with puberty or outside influences.
By enrolling in STEM programs, girls get the self-esteem boost they need when they see their projects flourish. While it may take some trial and error, the end product is worth the effort. The more confidence they can build through STEM programs for girls, the better off they’ll be.
2. Breaks Down Stereotypes
Besides boosting self-esteem, STEM programs for girls also help to break down stereotypes. Some still believe that STEM programs are just for males. By getting girls interested in STEM and seeing them succeed, they are breaking down these stereotypes.
3. Helps with Problem-Solving
To be successful at a STEM project, you have to be able to solve problems that pop up. It may be difficult at first. But, over time, girls learn how to solve problems and make their projects succeed. These problem-solving skills are ones they can use in all aspects of their lives.
Try a STEM Program at MakerKids!
MakerKids has STEM programs for girls and boys. We have a variety of programs in coding, robotics, and Minecraft for children in grades 1-8. They’ll learn the skills needed to succeed in each area. For more information on our programs, call us at 1-844-MAKERKIDS or visit us online.