How to Inspire Girls in STEM Through Top Educational Games and Activities
We are all aware that STEM is a big deal and so we encourage our kids to take up classes and get them workbooks and STEM education for kids. Despite giving them access to children learning games and lessons, there is a lack of diversity in the industry. If you asked your kid to think of a scientist, whose name do you think would pop up in her mind? Albert Einstein? Isaac Newton? It is less likely that she will think of Marie Curie or Rosalind Franklin. This is largely because:
- Girls and women are highly under-represented in STEM fields
- There is a gap in perception due to gender stereotypes and biases
These gaps don’t stem from a lack of intellectual ability, but from a view that STEM is only meant for boys and that’s why a lot of girls stay out of STEM fields despite having the inclination and the smarts.
So how do you, as a parent, be the cheerleader and shield her from believing all these stereotypes?
Change how you communicate
As parents, we encourage our children to be whoever they want to be. But this can actually dampen their interest when they begin to feel like they aren’t able enough to ‘be’ marine biologists or engineers or don’t relate to being one. Try instead to encourage them to ‘do’ math, science, engineering, etc. and engage them in fun games and STEM activities for kids. This is more likely to instill the confidence to make STEM their thing.
“It is important to continue working toward creating the archetype of the self-rescuing princess, empowering girls through depictions of women in STEM.” ― S.Ragle, Author
Too many books and videos don’t emphasize enough on the women of influence in STEM, feeding the wrong reality. Introduce women role models by exposing kids to documentaries and books that showcase women in STEM. Take them to museums and events that revolve around women inventors and innovators to erase the conditioning. While not all girls might want to be in the field, they won’t question whether they belong there.
Combat unrealistic expectations
Children often feel the pressure of doing well in all STEM subjects if they are excelling in one. It is important to debunk the myth that if your kid isn’t all that interested in say math and doesn’t bring home top scores, she isn’t fit to pursue any other STEM discipline. Let her know it’s okay to try her hand at all kinds of STEM programs, and STEM educational games and find what is of interest to her. What is important to get across is that skill and intelligence grow with effort and practice. It is equally imperative that parents do not have unrealistic expectations.
Spark curiosity and arm her
Kids often relate STEM to microscopes and beakers, complex machinery, and endless numbers. Stir their imagination by giving them access to interactive learning games and tools where they can roll up their sleeves and engage in STEM activities hands-on. Cook up a science experiment with her in the kitchen or give her the screwdrivers to take apart a discarded electronic device. Try out ipad games for kids that make STEM fun and engaging. Take the fear out of figures with Numbers, a game from Osmo which allows kids to arrange physical tiles to make numbers in a sea-themed adventure on-screen. If you have got a future physicist at home, she can guide bouncing balls with a pen and paper with Newton, through fans and platforms.
Girls often believe STEM fields are not for them and Osmo can break this stereotype and inspire your daughter to participate in STEM educational games. Start encouraging our girls with educational games to put their passions front and center and pursue their interests in STEM fields!